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John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter VII (search)
nasauga River, Johnston could have passed round him in the night. It seems to me certain that McPherson's force was too small to have taken and held that position. Indeed it does not seem at all certain that, however large his force might have been, he could have put troops enough in position before night to accomplish the object of cutting off Johnston's retreat. The case was analogous to that of Hood's crossing Duck River in November of that year, and trying to cut off our retreat at Spring Hill. There was simply not time enough to do it in that one day, and if not done in one day it could not be done at all. So that it does not seem at all certain that this, which was Thomas's plan to throw the entire Army of the Cumberland on the road in Johnston's rear and thus cut off his retreat, would have succeeded any better than Sherman's, yet it gave greater promise of success, and therefore ought to have been tried. It is at least probable that Johnston's view of the case (see his
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter IX (search)
parently even prominent generals, if they did not share the popular delusion, at least recognized its value. The capture of Atlanta was enough to meet the political necessity, make the election of Mr. Lincoln certain, and win rejoicings and congratulations from all parts of the North! It was not worth while to run any risk of trying to do more at that time! It had to be left for two of Sherman's corps, after the other four had gone on the march to the sea, to fight Hood at Columbia and Spring Hill, hurl him back from Franklin, and then, with reinforcements not equal to half what Sherman had taken away, to overwhelm him at Nashville. Why was not this done with a much larger force under Sherman at Atlanta? This is one of the questions for the future historian to discuss. During our rest near Lovejoy's, General Sherman requested me to give him a statement in writing of my dissent from his decision upon the question of relative rank, which I did. This he submitted to the War Depar
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter X (search)
moment's notice. It could have retired to Spring Hill or to Franklin without molestation or delayd, with two divisions of his corps, back to Spring Hill, to occupy and intrench a position there co I did not apprehend any serious danger at Spring Hill; for Hood's infantry could not reach that pon as I was satisfied that Hood was gone to Spring Hill and would not attack me on the bank of Duckis camp, south of Whitaker's right flank at Spring Hill, until it reached the Columbia turnpike. Bastly more serious than that at Columbia or Spring Hill, and solely because of the neglect of so si In short, the day gained at Duck River and Spring Hill was indispensable to Thomas's success. Theas well as his infantry, could have reached Spring Hill before daylight on the 30th, and would haventry, artillery, and trains to retreat from Spring Hill to Franklin in one compact column. A small force could not have been left at Spring Hill, as had been suggested, to delay Hood's advance, bec[12 more...]
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XI (search)
d 8 A. M., directing him to move at once to Spring Hill, he was ordered to leave one regiment to gud the river until dark and then join him at Spring Hill. It was then intended, in any event, to hold Spring Hill until the morning of November 30. At the same time Ruger was directed to order his irected to march along the railway track to Spring Hill, and thus avoid any interference from the elty execution of my orders. I arrived at Spring Hill at dusk with the head of the main column, hcted General Hammond to halt his command at Spring Hill and report to you for orders, if he cannot at Franklin, leaving a sufficient force at Spring Hill to contest the enemy's progress until you a; and, as events proved, he could not reach Spring Hill by his mud road from Huey's Mill until late in the afternoon. I had time to pass Spring Hill with my entire army before Hood's infantry advanmplate a retreat that day farther back than Spring Hill, as is shown by my direction to Ruger to ha[23 more...]
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XII (search)
ed with by the enemy's more numerous cavalry—not even at Spring Hill, where Stanley was attacked by cavalry as well as infantve Columbia on the night of November 28-9. His march on Spring Hill would have been the best if it had succeeded. But he faioad in the usual summer condition, he might have reached Spring Hill early in the afternoon, with force enough to accomplish le facing in that direction and covering the turnpike to Spring Hill, for which purpose I detained one of the two divisions of Stanley's corps which, at first, had been ordered to Spring Hill. I was willing to fight Hood in that position, and expectd undertaken the much more difficult task of marching to Spring Hill, where I believed sufficient preparations had been made st to apprehend was not an attempt to get in my rear at Spring Hill, but one to dislodge me from my position on Duck River bn where I was, from noon until dark, and then retreat to Spring Hill or Franklin in the night. At least I was willing to try
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XIII (search)
the capture of Hood's army. It is worthy of note as instructive comparisons that on November 30 Hood advanced from Spring Hill to Franklin and made his famous assault in just about the same length of time that it took our troops to advance from d make the assault of December 16; and that the Fourth and Twenty-third corps on November 29 and 30 fought two battles—Spring Hill and Franklin—and marched forty miles, from Duck River to Nashville, in thirty-six hours. Time is an element in militarlumbia several days, and hurt him considerably. Finally he got across the Duck River above, and made for Franklin via Spring Hill. I headed him off at Spring Hill with a division, and concentrated at Franklin. There he made the heaviest assaults Spring Hill with a division, and concentrated at Franklin. There he made the heaviest assaults I have ever seen, but was fairly repulsed and terribly punished. In fact we pretty much knocked all the fight out of him on that occasion, and he has shown very little since. Now I reckon he has n't any left. I barely succeeded in delaying Hood
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XIV (search)
r the battle of December 16 that battle due to the spontaneous action of subordinate commanders statements in the reports of the Corps commanders explanation of the absence of orders the Phraseology of General Thomas's report. the official records, Hood's statement, and Sherman's estimate, made at the time, agree pretty closely in placing Hood's infantry force at about 30,000 men when he crossed the Tennessee and began his advance toward Nashville. He lost a considerable number at Spring Hill on November 29, and over 6000, besides thirteen general officers, at Franklin on November 30. Therefore 24,000 must be a liberal estimate of his infantry strength after the battle of Franklin. The infantry strength of the Fourth and Twenty-third corps did not exceed 22,000 present for duty equipped, of which one brigade (Cooper's) of the Twenty-third was sent by General Thomas to guard the fords of Duck River below Columbia, and did not rejoin the corps until after the battle of Frankli
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XV (search)
the first letter from General Thomas recommending promotions for services in the campaign, containing the names of a large number of officers, no mention was made of my name or that of General Stanley, who had been conspicuous for gallantry at Spring Hill and at Franklin, where he was wounded. (3) In a telegram from the Secretary of War calling for recommendations for promotion, General Thomas had been informed that while there was no vacancy in the grade of major-general (the last having, influence which surrounded him, I refuse to alter that deliberate judgment. He is to me in memory the same noble old soldier and commander that he was when he intrusted to me the command of his army in Tennessee, from Pulaski through Columbia, Spring Hill, and Franklin to Nashville, and commended all I had done in that command. Truthful military history cannot be written without some criticism. He who never made a mistake never made war. I am keenly sensible of the delicacy of my personal
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Chapter XVI (search)
od's army? Or what, if Hood had succeeded in his projected invasion of Kentucky—an event much less improbable than many that have actually occurred in war? If Hood had succeeded in overwhelming the smaller force that opposed him at Columbia, Spring Hill, and Franklin, as he came near doing, Nashville would have fallen an easy prey, for it was not defensible by the force Thomas then had there. Thomas's cavalry was not yet remounted, and Forrest, with his troopers, would have had nearly a clearive at Nashville until the day of the battle of Franklin (November 30), and they were a very important part of the force relied upon in Sherman's plan. The whole fate of the Tennessee campaign was decided by the delay of Hood at Columbia and Spring Hill and his defeat in the desperate battle of Franklin, and this by two of Sherman's six corps, without the aid of any of the reinforcements upon which he counted so largely, and about which he says so much. It is not too much to say that the haz
John M. Schofield, Forty-six years in the Army, Index (search)
rig.-Gen. John H., needed at and ordered to Spring Hill, 209, 217, 258; battle of Nashville, 268 59; S.'s anxiety to attack, 159; advance on Spring Hill, the battle and its strategy, 160, 172, 173as's omission to give proper credit to, for Spring Hill and Franklin, 279 et seq.; disappearance ofents at, 37-41, 43, 46, 47; S. at, 65 Spring Hill, Tenn., Hood's movements and strategy at, appreas's omission to give proper credit to, for Spring Hill and Franklin, 279; at Pulaski, 252; telegrancert between S. and, 169; the situation at Spring Hill reported to, 174; neglect to furnish bridgethe ranks of, 198, 199, 252-254; ordered to Spring Hill, 210, 211, 214; defense of Nashville, 226; es, 19 Whitaker, Maj.-Gen. Walter C., at Spring Hill, 173, 216 White, Col. John S., in battleg of Duck River, 213; to cover Franklin and Spring Hill, 214; Hammond ordered to report to, 217; baer and Rutherford's Creek, 214; movement to Spring Hill, 215, 216; battle of Nashville, 243, 244, 2[15 more...]