April 26th, 1862.
“There is no word in the English language that can express the state in which we are, and have been, these last three days.A Confederate Girl’s Diary, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Sarah Morgan Dawson
Daybefore yesterday, news came early in the morning of three of the enemy’s boats passing the Forts, and then the excitement began. It increased rapidly on hearing of the sinking of eight of our gunboats in the engagement, the capture of the Forts, and last night, of the burning of the wharves and cotton in the city while the Yankees were taking possession. To-day, the excitement has reached the point of delirium. I believe I am one of the most self-possessed in my small circle; and yet I feel such a craving for news of Miriam, and mother, and Jimmy, who are in the city, that I suppose I am as wild as the rest. It is nonsense to tell me I am cool, with all these patriotic and enthusiastic sentiments. Nothing can be positively ascertained, save that our gunboats are sunk, and theirs are coming up to the city. Everything else has been contradicted until we really do not know whether the city has been taken or not. We only know we had best be prepared for anything. So day before yesterday, Lilly and I sewed up our jewelry, which may be of use if we have to fly. I vow I will not move one step,unless carried away. Come what will, here I remain.”
“The President telegraphed me yesterday that he thought I had better break the enemy’s lines at once. I was tempted to reply that he had better come and do it himself.”Maj. General George McClellan, April 1862
None but McClellan could have hesitated to attack.Confederate General Joe Johnston, April 22, 1862