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[491] until after he and the corps he commanded had rendered such service as to receive the special commendation of the general commanding the army.

Hood reports that when he left the field before Nashville he had hoped to be able to remain in Tennessee, on the line of Duck River; after arriving at Columbia, however, he became convinced that the condition of the army made it necessary to recross the Tennessee without delay. On the 21st he resumed his march for Pulaski, leaving Major General Walthall with five infantry brigades, and General Forrest with the main body of his cavalry, at Columbia, to cover the movements of the army. The retreat continued, and on the 25th, 26th, and 27th, the army, including the rear guard, crossed the Tennessee River at Bainbridge. The enemy had followed the rear guard with all his cavalry and three corps of infantry to Pulaski, and thence the cavalry continued the pursuit to the Tennessee River. After crossing the river, the army moved by easy marches to Tupelo, Mississippi. General Hood reported his losses in the Tennessee campaign to have been about ten thousand men, including prisoners, and that when he arrived at Tupelo he had 18,500 infantry and artillery, and 2,306 cavalry. I again quote from General Hood's report:

Here, finding so much dissatisfaction throughout the country, as, in my judgment, greatly to impair, if not destroy, my usefulness, and counteract my exertions, and with no desire but to serve my country, I asked to be relieved, with the hope that another might be assigned to the command who might do more than I could hope to accomplish. Accordingly, I was so relieved on the 23d of January, by authority of the President.

Though, as General Hood states in his book, page 273, I was ‘averse to his going into Tennessee,’ he might well assume that I ‘was not, as General Beauregard and himself, acquainted with the true condition of the army’ when they decided on the Tennessee campaign. Of the manner in which he conducted it, Isham G. Harris, the governor of Tennessee, a man of whose judgment, integrity, and manhood I had the highest opinion, wrote to me, on December 25, 1864:

. . . I have been with General Hood from the beginning of this campaign, and beg to say, disastrous as it has ended, I am not able to see anything that General Hood has done that he should not, or neglected any thing that he should, have done, . . . and regret to say that, if all had performed their parts as well as he, the results would have been very different.

To this I will add only that General Hood was relieved at his reiterated request, made from such creditable motives as are expressed in the extract above, taken from his official report, and that it was in no wise due to a want of confidence in him on my part.

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