on either side.
This is a matter for the future.
But were we to allow ourselves to speculate on this question we would be constrained to ask the American
people how it was that General Grant
, who up to this time had never achieved a single success except by vastly superior numbers, should have been accepted as the Moses to lead the Union
forces to victory and final triumph.
On December 31 and January 1-3, 1862-1862, the Federal
army, commanded by General Rosecrans
, met the Confederates
, commanded by General Bragg
, at Stone
's river, or Murfreesboro
The fight lasted a part of two days, the Confederates
withdrawing from the field, but carrying off their dead and wounded and artillery.
The last returns of Rosecrans
' army before this battle were as follows: Present for duty—Centre corps, 29,682; right wing, 13,779; left wing, 13,061; unattached forces, 9,748; total, 66,270.
, in his official report (Official Records
XX, p. 196), says: ‘We moved on the enemy with the following force: 46,940.
We fought the enemy with 43,400.’
Thus it will be seen that 3,540, or seven and one-half per cent, of those who ‘moved on’ the enemy did not participate in the battle.
The Confederates had ‘present for duty’ at this battle, 37,712.
Allowing them the seven and one-half per cent. granted the Federals
between the number that ‘moved on’ the enemy and those actually engaged in the fight, would give them a credit of 2,828, which would reduce their number actually engaged to 34,884.
It would then stand—Federals actually engaged in the fight, 43,400; Confederates, 34,884; difference in favor of Federals, 8,516.
This was one of the bloodiest conflicts of the war, and superb gallantry was shown on both sides.
We ask again: ‘Did the Federals
fight against superior numbers’ at Stone
The official losses reported on each side were as follows: Federals—Killed, 1,730; wounded, 7,802; captured, 3,717; total, 13,249.
Confederates—Killed, 1,294; wounded, 7,945; captured, 1,029; total, 10,266.
Losses of Federals over Confederates, 2,983.
The two great armies of the West
nerved themselves for a trial of their strength on the field of Chickamauga
on the 19th and 20th of September, 1863.
The soldiers in both armies had had their baptism of blood at Shiloh
's river and Gettysburg
, and were veterans indeed.
The Federals were commanded by General Rosecrans
, while his divisions were commanded by such distinguished officers as Thomas
The Confederates were commanded by General