for General Tilghman
would have been justified in retiring with the main body of his command, leaving a subordinate artillery officer to defend the work until compelled to surrender.
The railroad-bridge, only about twelve miles south of Fort Henry
, was now burned by the Federal
gunboats, and that line of communication between General Johnston
and his forces at Columbus, western Kentucky
, was cut off, as had been apprehended, leaving, as the shortest route available, the line of railroad by Nashville
, and Jackson
On the morning of the 7th, while confined to his bed by sickness, General Beauregard
was visited by General Hardee
, a classmate of his at the Academy at West Point
, who afterwards distinguished himself on many a battle-field during the Confederate
war. Exposure to the weather had produced upon General Beauregard
's health the effect he had feared when leaving Centreville
He was then suffering from a severe cold, accompanied by fever, and the violent inflammation of the throat (laryngitis) which resulted therefrom, detained him at Bowling Green
until its evacuation, and, for six months afterwards, caused him acute pain and much discomfort.
The fall of Fort Henry
had, more than ever, convinced General Beauregard
of the necessity of the concentration and aggressive movement he had already counselled.
In his conversation with General Hardee
he reiterated this opinion, and it was agreed between them that General Hardee
should open the subject anew to General Johnston
, and urge him to adopt General Beauregard
Later in the day a conference was held, at General Beauregard
's room, between Generals Johnston
, and himself, Colonel Mackall
, A. A. G., being present part of the time.
again called the attention of General Johnston
to the movement of concentration against General Grant
, which he thought still practicable, if immediately carried out, General Hardee
concurring, though not with much earnestness.
, after some discussion, adhered to the objections he had already made to this plan, and gave his own views as to the future operations of the campaign.
He being Commander-in-Chief
, and responsible for all