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Colonel William Preston Johnston, The Life of General Albert Sidney Johnston : His Service in the Armies of the United States, the Republic of Texas, and the Confederate States. 2 0 Browse Search
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700 miles in the rear. The infantry and artillery of the expedition, about 1,100 men, were assembled on October 4th, on Ham's Fork, at a camp some thirty miles from Fort Bridger and 130 miles from South Pass. Next day Colonel Alexander, having assumed command, determined, after counsel with his senior officers, that the Fort Bridger route to Salt Lake Valley was impracticable on account of the defenses in Echo Cafon, and that the more circuitous route by the most northern bend of Bear River Valley offered the best chance of safely wintering the troops. This movement was begun without knowledge of the mishap to the supply-trains in his rear. General Johnston, having satisfied himself by those mental processes so much like intuition to the observer that Bear River Valley was impracticable, and Fort Bridger the only point of concentration where the army could be wintered, acted with his usual decision. He took every means to this end, and ordered Colonel Alexander to withdraw