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where he laid a bridge over the Holston and crossed a part of his troops, seemed to give some ground for such apprehensions. The miserable condition of our troops, the season of the year, the almost total lack of means of transportation for supplies and of a pontoon bridge to cross the river, rendered any considerable movement on our part impossible. But to relieve the existing apprehension, I determined to assume the offensive at once, and to maintain it as far as possible. Early in February General Grant had proposed to give me 10,000 additional troops from General Thomas's army at Chattanooga, and to let me begin the campaign against Longstreet at once. But on February 16 he informed me that the movement would have to be delayed because of some operations in which General Thomas was to engage. Nevertheless, I advanced on the 24th with what force I had, at the same time sending a reconnaissance south of the French Broad River to ascertain the nature of a hostile movement rep
may say in criticism of General Sherman's acts or words shall seem unkind or be considered unjust, I can only disclaim any such feeling, and freely admit that it would be wholly unworthy of the relations that always existed between us. I write not for the present, but for the future, and my only wish is to represent the truth as it appears to me. If I fail to see it clearly, I do but condemn myself. History will do impartial justice. Having been in a subordinate position in the campaigns of 1864 in Georgia and Tennessee, I shall not attempt to write a full account of those campaigns, but shall limit myself to such comments as seem to me to be called for upon the already published histories of those campaigns. In estimating the merits of Sherman's Memoirs, The following was written in 1875, soon after the appearance of the first edition. it should be remembered that he does not, and does not claim to, occupy the position of a disinterested, impartial historian. He writes, not f
March 12th (search for this): chapter 7
ar as Morristown by February 29 with sufficient force to reconnoiter Longstreet's position. This reconnaissance demonstrated that the enemy held Bull's Gap, and that his entire force was grouped about that strong position. The object of this movement having been accomplished without loss, our troops retired to New Market to await the arrival of the troops to be sent by General Thomas, the completion of the railroad bridge, and other necessary preparations for the expected campaign. On March 12 another reconnaissance was made as far as Bull's Gap, which was found to be still occupied by the enemy, although reliable information indicated that Longstreet was preparing for, and had perhaps already begun, his movement toward Virginia. Although his force, if concentrated, was much superior to mine, I determined to endeavor to take advantage of his movement to attack his rear. My advance held Morristown; all the troops were ordered forward to that place, and preparations made for an a
February 8th, 1864 AD (search for this): chapter 7
Chapter VII Condition of the troops at Knoxville effect of the promotion of Grant and Sherman letter to Senator Henderson a visit from General Sherman United with his other armies for the Atlanta campaign comments on Sherman's memoirs faulty organization of Sherman's army McPherson's task at Resaca McPherson's character example of the working of a faulty system. I arrived at Knoxville, Tennessee, on February 8, 1864, and the next day relieved General John G. Foster. The troops then about Knoxville were the Ninth Corps, two divisions of the Twenty-third, and about one thousand cavalry and two divisions of the Fourth Corps; the latter belonged to the Department of the Cumberland, but had been left with General Burnside after the siege of Knoxville was raised by General Sherman. The Ninth and Twenty-third Corps were reduced in effective strength to mere skeletons, the former reporting present for duty equipped only 2800 men, and the latter 3000 men; and these h
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