Gloom overshadowed the Union in the early spring of 1863. The military situation, particularly In the eastern theater, seemed hopeless. In December the Army of the Potomac had suffered a severe defeat at Fredericksburg, and, at least for the immediate future, there were no indications that it was ready to redeem itself. As Allan Nevins has noted in his multivolume study of the war, many in the North believed at this time that the "valor, dash, and tenacity of the South ... combined with high military leadership, might yet possibly produce a deadlock-which would mean Confederate success. "1
Henig, Gerald S.
"Admiral Samuel F. Du Pont, the Navy Department, and the Attack on Charleston, April 1863,"
Naval War College Review: Vol. 32
, Article 8.
Available at: http://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol32/iss2/8