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[381] Walker, instead of moving down the Chickamauga Valley towards Crittenden's position, at Ringgold and the Mills, moved to Lafayette, and then from Lafayette in the direction of Lee and Gordon's Mills.

We may get a fair idea of this manoeuvre by likening the position to a triangle—A, B, C. The enemy is just without the limits of the triangle near B. Our forces being at A, and near B, we move all to C, and then move them to B. The distance from the Confederate position in the Cove to the Mills was about equal to that from Lafayette to the Mills, while the distance from the Cove to Lafayette was somewhat less. All the roads were good and open, having been traversed but the day before by various portions of General Bragg's army.

This concentration at Lafayette, being then a movement away from Crittenden rather than towards him, it is impossible to accept it as a part of a movement upon that corps of the Federal army. The key to it will be found in the following dispatch to Hindman. (See General Bragg's official report):

headquarters army of Tennessee, Lafayette, Ga., 12 P. M., September 10, 1863.
Major-General Hindman, Commanding:
General: Headquarters are here, and the following is the information:

Crittenden's corps is advancing on us from Chatanooga. A large force from the south has advanced to within seven miles of this point. Polk is left at Anderson's to cover your rear. General Bragg orders you to attack and force your way through the enemy to this point at the earliest hour you can see him in the morning. Cleburn will attack in front the moment your guns are heard.

I am, General, etc.,

The force seven miles to the south of Lafayette was the cause of the concentration at that point; and as every one on the ground knew, this concentration was not a part of the movement on Crittenden.

This dispatch, together with the extract from General Bragg's report, already given, shows that not only after, but even before Hindman's failure, the Confederate commander had very good knowledge of his enemy's whereabouts. Standing in McLemore's Cove, he

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Ringgold, Ga. (Georgia, United States) (1)
La Fayette (Georgia, United States) (1)
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Crittenden (4)
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