was unacquainted with the geography of the surrounding country.
's statement, I halted Cox
's division of the Twenty-third Corps a few miles north of Pulaski
so that the troops might be the more readily placed as the situation required when I had time to consider it. No part of the Twenty-third Corps actually went to Pulaski
, although that was the place to which General Thomas
had ordered it.
On the 19th General Thomas
repeated to me the same orders he had sent to General Stanley
, in these words: ‘If the enemy advances in force, as General Hatch
believes, have everything in readiness either to fight him at Pulaski
if he advances on that place, or cover the railroad and concentrate at Columbia
, should he attempt to turn your right flank. . . .’1
I then telegraphed General Thomas
, November 20, pointing out the faulty nature of the position selected by him for the troops at Pulaski
, and the danger that must be incurred in attempting to carry out his instructions to fight Hood
if he should advance upon that place; also suggesting what seemed to be the best way to avoid that difficulty.
very promptly approved these suggestions, and thus ended the embarrassment occasioned by the faulty instructions.
But his official report on that point has made it necessary for me to comment upon it more fully later.
The season of Hood
's invasion of Tennessee
was extremely unfavorable for aggressive operations, and hence correspondingly favorable for the defense.
The ordinary country roads were almost impassable, while the turnpikes were in good condition.
As we held the crossing of the Tennessee River
was compelled to cross at the Shoals below, and to advance over those very bad roads; hence we had ample time in which to make the necessary dispositions to oppose him.