The next battle in which General Cleburne participated was that of Missionary Ridge, November 30th, 1863, where he achieved additional distinction by the handsome manner in which he repulsed the repeated assaults made upon his position in the right wing of the Confederate line. And although this battle resulted in a victory to the Federal arms, General Cleburne's position was never shaken, much less taken, by any of the furious and repeated assaults that were made upon it during the action, but was abandoned in good order after the left wing of the Confederate army had been outflanked, beaten and routed by largely superior numbers—storming in column of three lines of battle, and making one of the most superb and gallant charges that we witnessed during the war. General Cleburne again distinguished himself in covering the retreat of the Confederate army from this field, and for his heroic defence of Ringold Gap was specially commended by the Confederate Congress. He was among the first to suggest and advocate the use of the colored troops in the armies of the Confederacy. This was in the winter of 1863 and 1864 when the Army of Tennessee was encamped at Dalton, Georgia. His advice in this regard was met with a prompt and almost unanimous rejection by that army. But viewed in the light of the vital fact that at that time our available resources in men were practically exhausted; that our armies in the field were daily diminishing by death from disease and casualties in battle, and no means by which to increase them; and also viewed in the light of subsequent results, the wisdom and propriety of such a policy cannot be successfully questioned. There were then no other available resources by which the ranks of our armies could be recruited and maintained. And so it now appears that General Cleburne and his few supporters in this idea were wiser and more prescient than the many who differed with them. Expediency suggested the policy he advised. General Cleburne was a division commander under General Joseph E. Johnston during his celebrated campaign in North Georgia, and distinguished himself in a number of its various battles, and more especially at New Hope church, where he repulsed the enemy with signal firmness and efficiency and with heavy losses to their charging columns. He commanded an army corps at the battle of Jonesboroa, Georgia, and covered the retreat of General Hood's defeated army from that field. He also commanded a corps at the battle of Franklin, Tennessee, where he was killed in storming the second line of the
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