Pittsburg Landing, Tenn., April 26, 1862.
I will go on and do my duty to the very best of my ability, without praise, and do all I can to bring this war to a speedy close. I am not an aspirant for anything at the close of the war.
There is one thing I feel well assured of; that is, that I have the confidence of every brave man in my command. Those who showed the white feather will do all in their power to attract attention from themselves. I had perhaps a dozen officers arrested for cowardice in the first day’s fight at this place. These men are necessarily my enemies.
As to the talk about a surprise here, nothing could be more false. If the enemy had sent us word when and where they would attack us, we could not have been better prepared. Skirmishing had been going on for two days between our reconnoitering parties and the enemy’s advance. I did not believe, however, that they intended to make a determined attack, but simply that they were making a reconnoisance in force.
My headquarters were in Savannah, though I usually spent the day here. Troops were constantly arriving to be assigned to brigades and divisions, all ordered to report at Savannah, making it necessary to keep an office and some one there. I was also looking for Buell to arrive, and it was important that I should have every arrangement complete for his speedy transit to this side of the river.
U. S. GRANT.
SOURCE: John Y. Simon, Editor, The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant: Volume 5: April 1-August 31, 1862, p. 78-9