George Brinton McClellan 1826 - 1885
and his staff
According to one source, Mathew Brady made this photograph of General George Brinton McClellan at Upton's Hill, near Centreville, Virginia, the most distant of the forts protecting the capital, near Confederate lines. One officer remembered that after he and his troops met McClellan here in August 1862, they clearly heard the cannons of the Second Battle of Bull Run, where General John Pope's federal troops were defeated. Most accounts suggest that McClellan held back expected support, while McClellan himself described the warm welcome he received after the battle as he led the Army of the Potomac back to Washington. Within a few weeks, McClellan successfully defended the capital from Lee's attack and then led Union troops in the bloody, indecisive Battle of Antietam. In November, after McClellan repeatedly failed to engage Lee's army, Lincoln turned the command over to General Ambrose Burnside. McClellan's reluctance to fight greatly troubled Lincoln, and remains a central problem for historians of the war.

See GPA Healy and Hancock, Birney and Staffs

Mathew Brady Studio
Albumen print
38.7 x 45.7 cm (15 1/4 x 18 inches)
1198.0004 (165-CO-72)
National Archives & Records Administration