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[198] of in view of the imminent danger afterward supposed to exist at Nashville, just as the brilliant victory at Nashville was accepted as demonstrating the wisdom of all that had gone before, even including Sherman's division of his army between himself and Thomas before his march to the sea. Such is the logic of contemporaneous military history!

In my long conversations with General Grant on the steamer Rhode Island in January, 1865, I explained to him fully the error into which he had been led in respect to Thomas's action or non-action at Nashville in December, and he seemed to be perfectly satisfied on that point. But he did not ask me anything about what had occurred before the battle of Franklin, and hence I did not tell him anything.

In connection with the action of General Thomas previous to the battle of Franklin, the following instructions from General Sherman on October 31 are important: ‘You must unite all your men into one army, and abandon all minor points, if you expect to defeat Hood General Schofield is marching to-day from here. . . .’ 1 Again, on the same date, he telegraphed: ‘Bear in mind my instructions as to concentration, and not let Hood catch you in detail.’2

Sherman thus gave the most emphatic warning against the mistake which Thomas nevertheless made by failing to concentrate all his own available troops until it was too late to meet Hood's advance, thus leaving two corps to bear the entire brunt of battle until the crisis of the campaign was passed at Franklin.

The following correspondence relating to the command of the army in the field, to increasing the Fourth and Twenty-third corps, and to the use to be made of R. S. Granger's troops, and the reason why Thomas should assume the offensive as soon as possible, is also important,

1 War Records, Vol. XXXIX, part III, p. 535.

2 I bid., p. 536.

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