previous next
[220] that might ensue, his views necessarily prevailed, and Colonel Mackall having been called out to attend to some pressing matters, relative to the fall of Fort Henry, in his absence Generals Beauregard and Hardee drew up a memorandum of General Johnston's projected plan, as then explained and insisted upon by him. He had declined to adopt General Beauregard's proposed concentration for the offensive, and had decided that his own and General Polk's army should operate on divergent lines. General Beauregard acquiesced in the details incident to General Johnston's campaign, as stated in the memorandum. But this was the extent of his concurrence. He was the author of none of the movements therein enumerated. The views he had expressed were diametrically opposite, and favored concentration against Grant at Donelson.

The following is the memorandum referred to:

Bowlin Green, Ky., February 7th, 1862.
At a meeting held to-day at my quarters (Covington House) by Generals Johnston, Hardee, and myself (Colonel Mackall, A. A. G., being present part of the time), it was determined that Fort Henry, on the Tennessee River, having fallen yesterday into the hands of the enemy, and Fort Donelson, on the Cumberland River, not being tenable, preparations should at once be made for the removal of this army to Nashville, in the rear of the Cumberland River, a strong point some miles below that city being fortified forthwith, to defend the river from the damage of gunboats and transports.

The troops at present at Clarksville shall cross over to the south side of that river, leaving only sufficient force in that town to protect the manufactories and other property, in the saving of which the Confederate government is interested.

From Nashville, should any further retrograde movement become necessary, it will be made to Stevenson, and thence according to circumstances.

It was also determined that the possession of the Tennessee River by the enemy, resulting from the fall of Fort Henry, separates the army at Bowling Green from the one at Columbus, Kentucky, which must henceforth act independently of each other until they can again be brought together. The first one having for object the defence of the State of Tennessee, along its line of operation, as already stated, and the other one of that part of the State lying between the Tennessee River and the Mississippi.

But as the possession of the former river by the enemy renders the lines of communication of the army at Columbus liable to be cut off at any time from the Tennessee River as a base, by an overwhelming force of the enemy, rapidly concentrated from various points on the Ohio, it becomes necessary, to prevent such a calamity, that the main body of that army should fall back to Humboldt, and thence, if necessary, to Grand Junction, so as to protect Memphis


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Albert Sidney Johnston (3)
G. T. Beauregard (3)
W. W. Mackall (2)
W. J. Hardee (2)
Stevenson (1)
L. Polk (1)
U. S. Grant (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
February 7th, 1862 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: