James Ford Rhodes (18481927). History of the Civil War, 18611865 1917.
set down in her diary, We begin to cry out for more ammunition and already the blockade is beginning to shut it all out. The Confederate Secretary of War [Walker] seemed to lack geniality and showed in his correspondence with the governors more acerbity than was desirable in an officer of a new government organizing for a protracted conflict. On the other hand, Davis was at first superior in administrative capacity to Lincoln. His West Point training, army service in Mexico and efficient conduct of the War Department for four years had made him familiar with military details which Lincoln had now to master with painful effort. Lee, as commander of the Virginia forces, was an efficient aid to the governor in Richmond, which city was destined to be the most important military point in the Confederacy; but, affected by the disposition that prevailed on each side to overrate the other, he, like the governor of Iowa, thought that the enemy had much superior arms.1
In perusing the confidential Union and Confederate correspondence between the bombardment of Sumter and the battle of Bull Run, one is struck with the unreadiness of both South and North for war and with the contrast generally between military conditions in this country and in Europe. In 1870, the French minister of war told his colleagues and the Emperor that France was ready, more than ready, and to a commission of the Corps Legislatif, declared, So ready are we that, if the war were to last two years, not a gaiter button would be found wanting. Within ten days he had transported by railroad to the frontier nearly 200,000 men with cannon, horses and munitions. Meanwhile Bismarck was asking Moltke, What are our prospects of victory? I believe, replied Moltke, that we are more than a match for them always with the reservation that no
Note 1. O. R., LI, Pt. I, IV, I; Chesnut; N. & H.; IV. [back]