Christopher Sullivan, AP:
… Gen. Robert E. Lee’s secret Special Orders No. 191, detailing the Southern commander’s audacious plans for an invasion of enemy territory that would propel the Confederates to victory. Carelessly left behind as Lee’s army marched north, [a] copy was spotted in a field by the Indianans, and Lee’s name jumped out as Mitchell and Bloss read it.
When they passed their stunning find up the chain of command, Lee’s counterpart, the famously cautious Union Gen. George McClellan, exclaimed, “Now I know what to do!”
Four days later came the cataclysmic clash along the Antietam near Sharpsburg — what James McPherson, the eminent Civil War historian, has called “arguably … THE event of the war.”
The orders were found wrapped around a few cigars in a farm field. History is totally weird sometimes.