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[127] attack. General Bragg was assigned to the command of a corps, and also as Chief of Staff. To General Beauregard was tendered the immediate command of the army in the impending battle, which he declined. He did this because he had just come into the district which he had assigned to General Beauregard and was disinclined to deprive him of any reputation he might acquire by the victory, if one should be gained. This did not mean that he relinquished the supreme command of the army. General Grant's army had been transferred up the Tennessee river by boats and was concentrated on the western bank at Pittsburg landing. It arrived by divisions, and General Bragg had proposed to Beauregard to attack before the arrival of the whole force, but General Beauregard did not acquiesce. General Grant's plan was for a continued movement of his men and General Buell's army. With Pittsburg landing as a base, the army was to occupy north Mississippi and Alabama, command the entire railroad system of that section, and take Memphis in the rear while Halleck came down the Mississippi river. General Johnston suspected the movement and prepared to defeat it. General Grant's army in camp consisted of 58,000 men, 50,000 of whom were effective, and Buell was near at hand with 37,000 more. General Mitchell with 18,000 men was moving against the railroad at Florence, Ala., not far distant. General Johnston had determined to attack on the 3d of April. His general plan was to attack by columns of corps and to make the battle a decisive one; to utterly defeat Grant, and if successful, to contend for the possession of Kentucky and Tennessee. On Saturday afternoon while waiting the dispopition of the troops, a council of war was held, in which Generals Johnston, Beauregard, Bragg, Polk, Breckinridge and Gilmer took part. The Confederate army was in line of battle within two miles of Shiloh Church, and of General Grant's line. General Beauregard proposed that the army should be withdrawn to Corinth. He argued that the delay and noise had given the enemy notice of their approach, and that they would be found fully intrenched. Genreal Johnston expressed surprise at the suggestion and Generals Polk and Bragg expressed their dissent. General Johnston closed the conference with the simple remark:

“Gentlemen, we shall attack at daylight to-morrow,” and turning to one of his staff officers, said: ‘I would fight them if they were a million. They can present no greater front between the two creeks than we can, and the more men they crowd in there the worse we can make it for them.’

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