Thursday, June 14, 2012

June 15, 1862 (Sunday): Beauregard Takes Leave

Bladon Springs

Tupelo. Miss., June 15, 1862.
    GENERAL: After delaying as long as possible to obey the oft-repeated recommendations of my physicians to take some rest for the restoration of my health, I have concluded to take advantage of the present lull in the operations of this army, due to the necessity of attending of the enemy, for absenting myself a short while from here, hoping to be back in time to assume the offensive at the earliest moment practicable. Meanwhile I will transfer the command of the forces of this department to the next officer in rank-General B. Bragg-furnishing him with such instructions as will enable him to give all orders required during my absence.
I propose leaving here to-morrow at 12 m. for Mobile, where I will remain a day or two inspecting the condition of its defenses, and will offer to Brigadier-General Forney such advice as, in my judgments, may be necessary and he may be willing to accept. I will then repair to Bladon's Springs, on the Tombigbee River, about 75 miles north of Mobile, where I will remain about one week or ten days, or long enough to restore my shattered health.
    Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

General, Commanding.

General S. COOPER,
C. S. Army,
Adjutant-General, Richmond, Va.


Official Records, Series I., Vol. 17, Part 2, Page 601.

Beauregard headed for Mobile to restore his health.  Since he did not discuss this with Richmond before hand it became one more item in Jefferson Davis' bill of particulars against him.  Although Beauregard anticipated returning to command, Davis would make his replacement Bragg permanent commander, sending the hero of Fort Sumter back to South Carolina to command the defenses of Charleston. Although this greatly displeased Beauregard, who believed he should command one of the major Confederate armies, it turned out to be an assignment which made good use of his abilities, much more so than field command.

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