Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 4.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

Memoranda of Military Policy Suggested by the Bull Run Defeat [1]

July 23. 1861.

1 Let the plan for making the Blockade effective be pushed forward with all possible despatch.

2 Let the volunteer forces at Fort-Monroe & vicinity---under Genl. Butler---be constantly drilled, disciplined, and instructed without more for the present.

3. Let Baltimore be held, as now, with a gentle, but firm, and certain hand.

4 Let the force now under Patterson, or Banks, be strengthened, and made secure in it's possition. [2]

5. Let the forces in Western Virginia act, till further orders, according to instructions, or orders from Gen. McClellan.

6. [Let] Gen. Fremont push forward his organization, and opperations in the West as rapidly as possible, giving rather special attention to Missouri.

7 Let the forces late before Manassas, except the three months men, be reorganized as rapidly as possible, in their camps here and about Arlington

8. Let the three months forces, who decline to enter the longer service, be discharged as rapidly as circumstances will permit.

9 Let the new volunteer forces be brought forward as fast as possible; and especially into the camps on the two sides of the river here.

July 27, 1861 [3]

When the foregoing shall have been substantially attended to---

1. Let Manassas junction, (or some point on one or other of the railroads near it;); and Strasburg, be seized, and permanentlyPage  458 held, with an open line from Washington to Manassas; and and [sic] open line from Harper's Ferry to Strasburg---the military men to find the way of doing these.

2. This done, a joint movement from Cairo on Memphis; and from Cincinnati on East Tennessee.


[1]   AD, DLC-RTL.

[2]   The forces operating near Harpers Ferry were not yet under command of General Nathaniel P. Banks. The order removing General Robert Patterson from command had been issued on July 19, but did not take effect until July 27. Patterson was held responsible for the defeat at Bull Run by reason of his failure to immobilize the Confederate forces under General Joseph E. Johnston.

[3]   The memoranda under this date continue on the same page with 8 and 9, above.