The "madness" of G.W. Smith, cont.

Russell Bonds mailed in some neat finds indeed:

Jefferson Davis to Winnie, June 2: (Papers of Jefferson Davis, 1862, p. 209)

:. . . Gen'l. Lee is in the field comdg. Genl. G.W. Smith has come in this morning sick, his old disease it is said."

OR, Vol. 11, p. 686-86, Smith's adjutant to Lee:

Hughes' House, June 2, 1862
General R. E. LEE, Commanding, &c:

GENERAL: I regret to inform you that General Smith finds himself utterly unable to endure the mental excitement incident to his actual presence with the army. Nothing but duty under fire could possibly keep him up, and there is danger of his entire prostration. He goes to town to-day to gain a few days' respite. All business and all exciting questions must be kept from him for awhile. Major Melton will accompany him to prevent, while it is necessary, all such intrusion.

Since writing the above, I have again seen the general, and am pained to learn that partial paralysis has already, commenced. The case is critical and the danger imminent. I will add a line in a few moments in reference to general condition of affairs I am, general, with high regard, your most obedient servant,

Major and Assistant Adjutant-General, Acting Engineer

Whiting did his boss no favors with this report! "Utterly unable to endure the mental excitement!" Note please, the progressive nature of this thing. Gullain-Barre is progressive in the same way.

Russell adds: "Welsh's Medical Histories of Confederate Generals (pp. 199-200) might shed some light or give some leads as well. Or not . . ." Not - Google Books won't allow a peek at the Smith entry.

In any case, it looks like we have additional confirmation of the malady starting on the morning of June 2nd. This makes mayhem with a lot of ACW narratives.