mean to attempt the locks. I think I can protect them unless troops come from Bowling Green.
T. L. CRITTENDEN.
NOVEMBER 27, 1861.
Brigadier General D. C. BUELL:
GENERAL: What is the reason for concentration of troops at Louisville? I urge movement at once on Eastern Tennessee, unless it is impossible. No letter from you for several days. Reply. I still trust to your judgment, though urging my own views.
GEO. B. McCLELLAN,
LOUISVILLE, KY., November 27, 1861.
Major General GEORGE B. McCLELLAN,
Commanding U. S. Army:
MY DEAR FRIEND: I have not written you very frequently because I could not write definitely, and because such, perhaps exaggerated, importance do I attach to secrecy in the matters, that I have hesitated to put my own thoughts to paper, and I know ask you to keep them to yourself. It is certainly possible that in the end you may have to observe how far the consummation will have fallen short of my plans.
i hope have not supposed that the introduction of the re-enforcements through this point has had nay reference to a defense of Louisville. That has not entered my mind at all. I assume that to be safe Bowling Green, nd have no such thought as that he will attempt to advance. His position is purely defensive, and he will quite content if he can maintain that. I have therefore thought of no such thing as fortifying Louisville. Sherman threw up little work at the mouth of Salt River. It may have been judicious when he did it. I have not seen the necessity of it since, though it does no harm.
If you will look carefully at the map you will see that Louisville affords the best base that can be taken for land operations from the north upon any part of Tennessee. The railroad to lebanon curves around to the northeast behind Salt River, giving, besides the Nashville railroad, three good pike roads, which converge to a point of easy communication for three columns about Glasgow - one by the mouth of Salt River, coming into the railroad at Elizabethtown; one by Bardstown and New Hawen, and coming into the direct pike road to Gallatin and Nashville; and one by Lebanon, Shepherdsville, and Greenburg into the same road; while Lebanon Junction, New Haven, and Lebanon form convenient points for the final departure of as many columns Lebanon also affords a point of departure for a column on east Tennessee as short as any route; for wagon transportation as short as the route from Cincinnati by Lexington, and shorter and less attend with delay by railroad. Nothing could be more convenient. This point has the further advantage of bringing everything under my eye. I could know nothing of what be done from a base at Cincinnati. These advantages will not fail to impress themselves upon you without going more into detail.
And now for a plan of campaign: Up to the organization of columns behind Salt River all the plans I have in view at present concur.