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An unceasing work of war In the picture the contraband laborers often pressed into service by Federals are repairing the “stringer” track near Murfreesboro after the battle of Stone's River. The long lines of single-track road, often involving a change from broad-gauge to narrow-gauge, were entirely inadequate for the movement of troops in that great area. In these isolated regions the railroads often became the supreme objective of both sides. When disinclined to offer battle, each struck in wild raids against the other's line of communication. Sections of track were tipped over embankments; rails were torn up, heated red-hot in bonfires, and twisted so that they could never be used again. The wrecking of a railroad might postpone a maneuver for months, or might terminate a campaign suddenly in defeat. Each side in retreat burned its bridges and destroyed the railroad behind it. Again advancing, each had to pause for the weary work of repair.

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Murfreesboro (Tennessee, United States) (2)

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