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[485] enemy was threatening Union Causeway, which extends across the large swamps that lie between Savannah and Charleston, and offered the only practicable line of retreat, he determined to evacuate the place rather than expose the city and its inhabitants to bombardment. He also thought holding it had ceased to be of any special importance, and that troops could do more valuable service in the field. Accordingly, on the night of December 20th, having destroyed the navy yard, the ironclads, and other government property, and razed the fortifications below the city, he withdrew his army and reached Hardeeville on the evening of the 22d, without hindrance or molestation on the part of the enemy.

Having heretofore stated my objections to the plan of sending Hood's army into Tennessee after the fall of Atlanta, I will now follow it in that compaign, relying for the facts on the official report of General Hood of February 15, 1865. The fidelity and gallantry of that officer and the well-known magnanimity of his character are a sufficient guarantee of the impartiality of his narration.

He reported the arrival of his army on October 20, 1864, where he was joined by General P. G. T. Beauregard, commanding the military department. He writes that, after withdrawing from Atlanta, his hope had been that Sherman in following might offer an opportunity to strike him in detail, but in this he was disappointed. Hood reported that the morale of his army, though improved, was not such as, in the opinion of his corps commanders, would justify a general engagement while the enemy remained united. At Gadsden he found a thorough supply of shoes and other stores, but after a full and free conference with General Beauregard at Tuscumbia he decided to cross the Tennessee and move against Thomas, who with his corps had been detached by Sherman and sent into middle Tennessee. General Beauregard had sent orders to General Forrest to move with his cavalry into Tennessee; the main body of Hood's cavalry had been sent to follow Sherman. As the orders to Forrest were incidentally delayed, and Hood had not cavalry enough to protect his trains, he was compelled to wait for the coming of Forrest. To hasten the meeting, he moved down the river as far as Florence, where he arrived on October 31st. This unfortunate delay gave the enemy time to repair the railroad to Chattanooga, and accumulate supplies at Atlanta for a march thence toward the Atlantic coast. Forrest's cavalry joined on November 21st, and the movement began. The enemy's forces at that time were concentrated at Pulaski and at Lawrenceburg. Hood endeavored to place his army between these forces and Nashville, but our cavalry, having driven off the enemy at Lawrenceburg, gave notice of our advance, and on the 23d he evacuated Pulaski and moved

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