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[399] when, satisfied that he had marched westward over the Sand Mountains, he proceeded
Oct. 26, 1864.
in preparations to put into execution his important plan, with a full understanding with Generals Grant and Thomas, and the approval of the General-in-chief. Stanley was ordered to proceed to Chattanooga with the Fourth Corps, and report to General Thomas, and Schofield was directed to do the same.

To General Thomas, Sherman now delegated full power over all the troops under his command, excepting four corps, with which he intended to march from Atlanta to the sea. He also gave him the two divisions of General A. J. Smith, then returning from the business of driving Price out of Missouri;1 also all the garrisons in Tennessee, and all the cavalry of the Military Division, excepting a single division under Kilpatrick, which he reserved for operations in Georgia. General Wilson had just arrived from the front of Petersburg and Richmond, to assume the command of the cavalry of the army, and he was sent back to Nashville, with various dismounted detachments, with orders to collect and put in fighting order all the mounted men serving in Kentucky and Tennessee, and report to General Thomas. Thus the latter officer was furnished with strength believed to be sufficient to keep Hood out of Tennessee; and he was invested with unlimited discretionary powers in the use of his material. Sherman estimated Hood's force at thirty-five thousand infantry and ten thousand cavalry.

By the first of November, Hood made his appearance near the Tennessee River, in the vicinity of Decatur, and passing on to Tuscumbia, laid a pontoon bridge across that stream at Florence. Then Sherman turned his force toward Atlanta, preparatory to taking up his march for the sea. The Army of the Tennessee moved back to the south side of the Coosa, to the vicinity of Smyrna Camp-ground. The Fourteenth Corps moved to Kingston, from which point all the sick and wounded, and all surplus baggage and artillery, were sent to Chattanooga. The garrisons north of Kingston withdrew to the same place, with the public property and rolling stock of the railway. Then the mills and founderies at Rome were destroyed, and the railway was thoroughly dismantled from the Etowah to the Chattahoochee. The army crossed that stream, destroyed the railroads in and around Atlanta, and, on the 14th of November,

the entire force destined for the great march to the sea was concentrated around that doomed city.

The writer; accompanied by his traveling companions already mentioned (Messrs, Dreer and Greble), visited the theater of the Georgia campaign in 1834, from Dalton to Atlanta, in the delightful month of May, 1866. We left Chattanooga early on the morning of the 15th,

May, 1866.
by railway. After passing through the tunnel at the Missionaries' Ridge, we crossed the Chickamauga River several times before reaching Tunnel Hill, in Rocky Face Ridge. The country in that region was quite picturesque, but utterly desolate in appearance. Over it the great armies had marched, and left the horrid foot-prints of war. At Dalton, a once flourishing Georgia town, where Bragg and Johnston had their quarters for several months, we saw she first terrible effects of the campaign upon the works of man. Ruin

1 See page 280.

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