Rctretit from />htff/>f)t. 285
General McClellan (from his letters) knew all about the "weak rebel force," as he called the Virginia troops, and of their lack of arms and otherwise unfortunate condition he was going to take advantage.
In a letter of May 29th, of general instruction, to General T. A. Morris, of the Indiana volunteers, who had command of eight full regiments of the van of General McClellan's army, General McClellan uses the following language (see page 394) : "If traitors fall into your hands, deal summarily with them. In aggravated cases bring them before a court martial ; in ordi- nary cases either keep them under guard or send them to the Columbus penitentiary, as circumstances may render expedient." Such was the animus that accompanied this vast army with which General McClellan invaded the northwestern part of Vir- ginia, and so great and so aggressive was this army of invasion that a part of it reached the top of Cheat Mountain, between Ran- dolph and Pocahontas counties, a distance of more than one hundred and fifty miles from Parkersburg, before the Confede- rates could bring a sufficient force against it to stop it. So much for the plans and movements of the Federal army.
And now before locating the town of Philippi and describing the Confederate forces, the writer desires to say he has before him three diaries that were kept by two enlisted soldiers and one by a Presbyterian minister, who accompanied this "Provisional Army" as a volunteer chaplain.
The minister is still living, in the person of the Rev. William T. Price, D. D., of the new town of Marlinton, of Pocahontas county, W. Va., on the Greenbrier division of the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad. In the spring of 1861 Dr. Price was a young preacher, supplying the congregations of McDowell and Wil- liamsville Churches, in Highland county, Va., and when Cap- tain Felix H. Hull, of that county, with his company of vol- unteers, was ordered to Grafton by Governor Letcher Mr. Price desired to accompany the soldiers, and at his special re- quest the two congregations voted him a leave of absence to go to Grafton.
At this time he was the only preacher to accompany any of