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[350] of staff,1 until sunset. By one of them the army was placed in the previously-chosen position covering the roads by which the enemy was approaching.

In transferring the command to General Hood I explained my plans to him.2 First, I expected an opportunity to engage the enemy on terms of advantage while they were divided in crossing Peach-Tree Creek, trusting to General Wheeler's vigilance for the necessary information. If successful, the great divergence of the Federal line of retreat from the direct route available to us would enable us to secure decisive results; if unsuccessful, we had a safe place of refuge in our intrenched lines close at hand. Holding it, we could certainly keep back the enemy, as at New Hope Church and in front of Marietta, until the State troops promised by Governor Brown were assembled. Then, I intended to man the works of Atlanta on the side toward Peach-Tree Creek with those troops, and leisurely fall back with the Confederate troops into the town, and, when the Federal army approached, march out with the three corps against one of its flanks. If we were successful, the enemy would be driven against the Chattahoochee where there are no fords, or to the east, away from their communications, as the attack might fall on their right or left. If unsuccessful, the Confederate army had a near and secure place of refuge in Atlanta, which it could hold forever, and so win the campaign, of which that place was the object. The

1 General Mackall was requested to use General Hood's authority, as I had none.

2 See my official report of the campaign, published by the Government.

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Peach Tree Creek (Mississippi, United States) (2)
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J. B. Hood (2)
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