The Fall Campaign, 1862

Union Force Composition and Strength 1862 Campaigns

Information for MG Edwin "Bull" Sumner

July 31, 1862

  1. Secretary of War Stanton has appointed you as commander of the Army of the Potomac. Under the present emergency you are subordinate to MG John Pope, commander of the Army of Virginia.

  2. At nightfall on 21 August your forces were located at the following:
    • I Corps - 16 miles East of Front Royal (1st division is rested, 2nd and 3rd must rest a day before they continue).
    • II Corps - 4 miles SE of Fredrick.
    • III Corps - 12 miles East of Front Royal - they have been marching one day.
    • 1st Cavalry Brigade - Front Royal. All forces have full food and ammunition.

  3. On the 21st, other union forces were located at:
    • MG Pope's Army of Virginia
      • IV Corps - Between Leesburg and Fredrick
      • V and VII Corps - near Waterford.
      • Cavalry 8 miles East of Harpers Ferry and at Front Royal.
    • MG McDowell's Army of the Valley is Northeast of Romney - Headed for Williamsport
    • Gov Curtain's PA Militia in Chambersburg and Carlile

  4. Other information
    • CS Forces, estimated at 30,000, are known at Fredrick.
    • No other information is available about their disposition except a cavalry brigade was near Front Royal on the 20th.
    • There are federal garrisons at Baltimore (2000), Washington(10500), and Bryantown(1000).
    • A US Supply depot exists at Manassas. Supply base at Aquia Creek has been dismantled. Base at Harpers Ferry and Fredrick have been captured. Base at Romney destroyed by MG Burnside.
    • A military prison at Bryantown contains about 10,000 CS prisoners.
    • Transports may navigate up rivers to Havre de Grace, Baltimore, Washington, Fredricksburg, Urbana, West Point, and Richmond. There is a pontoon train in Washington.

  5. US Campaign Objectives (In order of priority)
    1. Protect Washington from CS forces (THE MOST IMPORTANT OBJECTIVE).
    2. Protect Northern territory from invasion by the CS.
    3. Do not allow Baltimore or Harrisburg to fall into CS hands.
    4. Keep the rail lines open from Washington to both the West and North.
    5. Hold the Valley in Union control.
    6. Keep Maryland in the Union.
    7. Destroy the CS army.
    8. Capture Richmond.
    9. Do not suffer a major defeat North of the Potomac.
    10. Maintain your army as viable fighting forces.