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[163] affected not only the imagination, but the judgment of the gravest and steadiest minds. It was these considerations which the general-in-chief had to contemplate, and these cares he had to sustain.

Hood, meanwhile, had remained at Gadsden only one day, to issue supplies, and on the 21st of October, he took up his line of march for the Tennessee. On the 26th, he arrived at Tuscumbia, on that river, a hundred miles west of Gadsden. This made it evident that the invasion of Tennessee was actually contemplated, and the same day Sherman detached the Fourth corps, with orders to proceed to Chattanooga and report to Thomas. On the 30th, as the danger became more imminent, the Twenty-third corps, under Schofield, was dispatched with the same destination, and Wilson was sent back to Nashville with all dismounted detachments, and ordered to collect as rapidly as possible all cavalry serving in Tennessee and Kentucky, and report to Thomas for duty. With these forces and the garrisons in Kentucky and Tennessee, it was hoped that Thomas would be able to defend the railroad from Chattanooga to Nashville, and still have an army with which he could cope with Hood, until the reinforcements from Missouri and elsewhere should arrive. On the 1st of November, Sherman telegraphed: ‘I have retained about fifty thousand good troops, and have sent back about twenty-five thousand, and have instructed General Thomas to hold defensively Nashville, Chattanooga, and Decatur, all strongly fortified, and provisioned for a long siege. I shall destroy all the railroads of Georgia, and do as much substantial damage as possible, trusting that ’

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