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[305] been more successful, none can regret more than myself, but he will doubtless be prevented from capturing Augusta, Charleston, and Savannah, and he may yet be made to experience serious loss before reaching the coast. On the 16th of November, when about leaving Tuscumbia, Ala., on a tour of inspection to Corinth, Miss., I was informed by General Hood of the report just received by him, that Sherman would probably move from Atlanta into Georgia. I instructed him at once to repeat his orders to General Wheeler to watch closely Sherman's movements, and, should he move, as reported, to attack and harass him at all favorable points.

I telegraphed to Lieutenant-General Taylor, at Selma, Ala., to call on Governor Watts, of Alabama, and Governor Clarke, of Mississippi, for all the State troops that they could furnish, and, with all the available movable forces of his Department, to keep himself in readiness to move at a moment's notice to the assistance of Major-General Howell Cobb and Major-General G. W. Smith, who were then at or about Griffin, Ga., threatening Atlanta.

I also telegraphed to General Cobb to call upon Governor Brown, of Georgia, and Governor Bonham, of South Carolina, for all the State troops that could be collected.

I made all necessary preparations to repair forthwith to Georgia, in the event of Sherman's executing his reported movement.

On my arrival at Corinth, on the 18th of November, having been informed that Sherman had commenced his movement, I issued all necessary orders to meet the emergency, including an order to General Hood to send one division of cavalry (Jackson's) to reinforce Wheeler; but this order was suspended by him, his objection being that his cavalry could not be reduced without endangering the success of his campaign in Tennessee, and that General Wheeler already had thirteen brigades under his command. I finally instructed him to send only one brigade, if he contemplated taking the offensive at once, as already had been decided upon. I then left Corinth for Macon, where I arrived on the 24th of November.

I did not countermand the campaign into Tennessee to pursue Sherman with Hood's army for the following reasons:

1st. The roads and creeks from the Tennessee to the Coosa rivers, across Sand and Lookout mountains, had been, by the prevailing heavy rains, rendered almost impassable to artillery and wagon-trains.

2d. General Sherman, with an army better appointed, had already the start of about two hundred and seventy-five miles, on comparatively good roads. The transfer of Hood's army into Georgia could not have been more expeditious by railway than by marching through the country, on account of the delays unavoidably resulting from the condition of the railroads.

3d. To pursue Sherman the passage of the Army of Tennessee would necessarily have been over roads with all the bridges destroyed, and through a devastated country, affording no subsistence or forage, and, moreover, it was feared that a retrograde movement on our part would seriously deplete the army by desertions.

4th. To have sent off the most or the whole of the Army of Tennessee in pursuit of Sherman would have opened to Thomas's forces the richest


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