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Chapter 21:

  • Difficulty of collecting and organizing commands during night of the 6th.
  • -- firing resumed early next morning. -- Nelson's brigades cross the Tennessee. -- positions taken by the federals. -- Chalmers's brigade and a mixed command force back Nelson's advance. -- at 8 A. M. The Confederates are driven back with the loss of a battery. -- they regain the position and battery at 9. -- critical situation of Ammen's brigade. -- New position assumed by the Confederates. -- Crittenden's division engaged. -- absence of General Polk from the field. -- his timely arrival at 10.30. -- his charge with Cheatham's brigade. -- organization of Federal army during the night of the 6th. -- inaction of General Sherman on the morning of the 7th. -- General Breckinridge ordered forward. -- enemy driven back on our whole line. -- advance of Federal right wing. -- its repulse. -- at 1 P. M. Enemy on our left reinforced. -- General Bragg calls for assistance. -- General Beauregard in person leads the 18th Louisiana and other troops to his aid. -- Predetermination of General Beauregard to withdraw from the battle-field. -- couriers sent to Corinth to inquire about General Van Dorn. -- preparations for retreat. -- guns and colors captured by Confederates on the 6th. -- slow and orderly withdrawal of Confederate forces. -- inability of the enemy to follow. -- reconnoissance of General Sherman on the morning of the 8th. -- Confederates not disorganized. -- their loss during the battle. -- computation of numbers engaged on both sides. -- Federal loss.

The night of the 6th of April, as has been already stated, was so dark and stormy that it was found impossible properly to collect and organize all the commands. The fighting, moreover, had been protracted even after dusk, on certain parts of the field, before General Beauregard's orders to arrest the conflict could be communicated and carried out.

At about half-past 5 o'clock, on the morning of the 7th, the skirmish-firing on our right, in an easterly direction, towards the Tennessee River, indicated that the enemy was about to assume the offensive. Generals Hardee, Breckinridge, and Bragg repaired at once to their respective commands, and availed themselves of such forces as they had immediately at hand, with which to oppose this onset. General Hardee had, under his orders, on

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G. T. Beauregard (3)
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