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1 Hood attributed his lack of success entirely to Cheatham's remissness. ‘Major-General Cheatham was ordered at once to attack the enemy vigorously and get possession of this pike [the Franklin road]; yet although these orders were frequently and earnestly repeated, he made but a partial and feeble attack, failing to reach the point indicated. Darkness soon came on, and to our mortification the enemy continued moving along this road, almost in ear-shot, in hurry and confusion nearly the entire night. Thus was lost the opportunity for striking the enemy for which we labored so long, the best which the campaign has offered, and one of the best afforded us during the war. Major-General Cheatham has frankly confessed the error of which he was guilty, and attaches much blame to himself.’—Hood to Beauregard, December 11.No reason, however, is given by Hood for the failure to attack the column of Schofield after dark.
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