entrenchments at every halt.
In at least two of the great battles during the preceding period of the war — Bull Run
— no entrenchments to speak of had been used.
, going to the extreme in the other direction, lost valuable time constructing trenches for which a little effort at reconnaissance would have told him there was no use. With such good preliminary preparation we should be prepared to see field-fortifications used everywhere more lavishly.
And we are not disappointed in finding that both parties to the controversy had now learned their lesson.
At Stone's River
, or Murfreesboro
, the Federals
entrenched a part of their extreme left and the Confederates
their right and center before the battle.
On the first day, the Federal
right was driven back, and during the following night the Confederates
entrenched practically all of the remainder of their line.
The net result of the battle was a drawn fight, the opponents not daring to attack each other's works seriously.
A wholesome respect had grown for hasty entrenchments.
The “dirt-diggers” were coming to the front.
The defensive warfare carried on to the end by the Confederates
in the West
placed them most of the time behind their temporary or semi-permanent works.
All the forts along the Mississippi
were, necessarily, of the strongest character, assuming the importance of permanent fortifications, armed with heavy guns and manned by small permanent garrisons and, during Grant
's and Banks
' campaigns, by larger garrisons, pushed in from the field.
All of these stronger places had to be taken by the process of regular siege.
retired from Murfreesboro
, he entrenched several lines between that place and Chattanooga
, but Rosecrans
, by consummate strategic skill, turned him out of all of them without fighting serious battles.
On the battlefield of Chickamauga
, the infantry and artillery of Thomas
' wing of the Federal
army stood “like a rock” behind entrenchments and barricades of earth, fence rails, and logs.