James Longstreet in Harper's Weekly


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General James Longstreet in Harper's Weekly



General James Longstreet

General James Longstreet was one of the South's most revered leaders, and on July 9, 1864 Harper's Weekly ran a story and portrait of the beloved southern commander.  The portrait is presented at right.  It is a photograph taken of the original 1864 Harper's Weekly newspaper.  The image is captioned, "THE REBEL GENERAL JAMES LONGSTREET". Along with the image is a very interesting story on Longstreet, which we present below, in its entirety.


General James Longstreet

General James Longstreet

Harper's Weekly

July 9, 1864


IN our last Weekly was engraved a portrait of General LEE, and in this we give that of General LONGSTREET, who is perhaps, since the death of STONEWALL JACKSON, second only to LEE in the military reputation he has achieved by the campaigns between Washington and Richmond during the last three years. General James LONGSTREET, who is a native of Alabama, was regularly educated for the profession of arms. He entered the United States army in 1838. He was attached first to the fourth and then to the Eighth infantry regiments. He served in all the battles of the Mexican war, and, like General LEE, was wounded at Chapultepec. He was twice brevetted for distinguished services in that war. In 1858 be obtained a post in the Paymaster's department, to which he belonged, with the rank of Major. When the civil war broke out, in 1861, he at once joined the army of the Confederate States. The brigade which he commanded at the fight of Bull Run, in July of that year, was one of' the first bodies of Southern troops that came into actual collision with the Federals; and in the sanguinary battle of Manassas, which soon afterward ensued, General LONGSTREET led the main attack, though General BEAUREGARD was in chief command. As a General of Division, LONGSTREET acted under General LEE throughout the campaigns of 1862 and 1863. LONGSTREET is forty-three years of age—a thick-set, determined-looking man. His corps, who are devotedly attached to him, often complain that he is always with General LEE. He is in the habit of exposing himself in a careless manner, and it was perhaps in this way that he got his wound in one of the battles in the Wilderness. At Gettysburg he is said to have led a Georgian regiment in a charge against a battery, hat in hand, and in front of every body. A few hours later a Colonel found him seated on the top of a snake fence at the edge of the wood, and looking perfectly calm and unperturbed, while some of his troops passed by. The gallant Colonel, who scarcely knew what had been the result of the battle, observed to General LONGSTREET, "I wouldn't have missed this for anything." LONGSTREET replied, laughing, "The devil you wouldn't! I should liked to have missed it very much; we've attacked, and been repulsed; look there!"

- - - End of Harper's Weekly Article - - -



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