This Week in the Civil War - 583

Jun 3, 2013

On Tuesday, June 2, 1863 President Abraham Lincoln conferred with General John Reynolds about the Army of the Potomac.  Reynolds had a record of criticizing his superiors, including Ambrose Burnside and Joseph Hooker. 

He had previously written in a private letter, “If we do not get someone soon who can command an army without consulting 'Stanton and Halleck' at Washington, I do not know what will become of this Army." Lincoln is believed to have asked Reynolds whether he would consider commanding the Army of the Potomac.  

Reynolds replied that he would be willing only if he were given a free hand and isolated from the political influences that had affected other Army commanders throughout the war. Lincoln promptly opted not to offer Reynolds command of the Army of the Potomac.