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1862 November 26: Three Generals

November 28, 2012

The following three short articles, on one Confederate and two Union generals, come from The Prescott Journal of November 26, 1862.

Earl Van Dorn, from the Civil War Trust

END OF A BAD MAN.—Gen. Van Dorn [Earl Van Dorn] was once a great favorite in our army, and the Nashville Union has been told by one of his former companions in arms that he was regarded as one of the most accomplished and brave of the rebel officers.  He became a miserable debased creature, having degraded himself socially years before he became a traitor.  While in the United States service he deserted his young wife, a lovely and accomplished Mississippi girl, and took up a vulgar, ignorant woman, from the lowest walks of life.  He had formerly been popular, but when this event occurred, his brother officers and former associates forsook him entirely, and refused to recognize him any further.  He sank lower and lower, until he reached the bottom of moral degradation by joining the rebellion, and he died by the hands of a fellow traitor to a brawl, which he originated.

Nathaniel Lyon, from the Library of Congress

GENERAL LYON.—General Nathaniel Lyon, whose sad and untimely loss in Missouri was such a blow to the Union cause, is thus sketched by the editor of the Richmond Examiner:

“General Lyon was an able and a dangerous man—a man of the times, who appreciated the force of audacity and quick decision in a revolutionary war.  To military education and talent, he united a rare energy and promptitude.  No doubts or scruples unsettled his mind.  A Connecticut Yankee, without a trace of chivalric feeling or personal sensibility—one of those who submit to insult with indifference, yet are brave on the field, and was this exception to the politics of the late regular army of the United States, that he was an unmitigated, undisguised, and fanatical abolitionist.”

Quiet Retirement.

John C. Frémont, from the Library of Congress

The example of Fremont [John C. Frémont], superseded twice at the head of armies which he inspired with confidence and enthusiasm, and in the midst of succes [sic] which was at once turned to disaster, had given the people an idea that the retirement of a superceded [sic] General was a dignified affair.  They are wiser since they have seen the thing done in the regular way.  Now they find that the military way is to give the intelligence of the removal four days to work in the army, and then to have it paraded, in a pathetic farewell address read to each division.  This appeal from the President to the sympathies of the Army, and by means of disciplined expressions may be made quite effective.  With experience we shall improve in our military ways.—Cincinatti [sic] Gazette.

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