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[402] including the troops which arrived on the 20th of September, at 55,000. The Federal cavalry, about 10,000 strong, was outnumbered by the Confederate cavalry by about one thousand men. Thus speak the returns. Perhaps a deduction of 5,000 men from the reported strength of each army would more nearly represent the actual combatants. But in any case it is, I think, certain that Rosencrans was stronger in infantry and artillery than Bragg by at least 4,000 men.

On the night of the 17th General Bragg put forth an order for battle on the 18th. What was then the position of the two armies?

West Chickamauga or, as I shall hereafter call it, Chickamauga creek or river, rises in McLemore's Cove, and flows around the northern end of Pigeon Mountain. The river at that time was crossed by numerous bridges and was fordable at many points, but except at the fords and bridges, it offered a serious obstacle to the movement of guns and troops. The Lafayette road, along which Bragg's army had retreated, crosses the Chickamauga at Lee's Mills. The course of this road is nearly north and south, the general course of the Chickamauga nearly northeast. It is the country in the northeastern angle between river and road which is about to become the bloody field of the first day's battle. It is a rather flat country, not rough or even rolling till you approach the spurs of the low mountains, thickly wooded, with here and there a field of Indian corn, then just ripe, and occasionally an opening of gladelike, treeless land not under any crop, and straggling along on the highway, at intervals of a mile or half a mile, small farmhouses with their stables and corncribs. Neighbourhood roads lead through the forest from the crossings of the Chickamauga to the Lafayette highway. As you approach the spurs of Missionary ridge, the ground becomes rugged and precipitous. In the angle between river and road there is nothing to remind you of the close vicinity of the mountains, but the impression is of almost unbroken forest, of a rather flat, thinly peopled, poorly tilled, wooded region. The woods offered no serious obstacle to the movement of infantry, but artillery could only move freely along the roads.

McCook's corps of the Federal army had now been united to

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