War of the Rebellion: Serial 050 Page 0219 Chapter XLII. THE CHICKAMAUGA CAMPAIGN.

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upon us, nor fix his mind upon the means of preventing it. I never saw anything which seemed so lamentable and hopeless.

A rebel officer last evening shouted to one of our pickets that Bragg had been relieved and either Johnston or Longstreet put in his place.

Report from our cavalry, which Rosecrans will forward to-day, make the rebel loss in the recent raid 2,000 men and five guns. Thirty-eight men captured in our uniform were summarily executed. Nothing heard from forces of Sherman.

[C. A. DANA.]

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

[Secretary of War.]

CHATTANOOGA, October 16-4 p.m.

I have just had a full conversation with General Rosecrans upon the situation. He says the possession of the river as far up as the head of Williams' Island, at least is a sine qua non to the holding of Chattanooga, but that it is impossible for him to make any movement toward gaining such possession until General Hooker's troops are concentrated and his transportation gets up. Hooker's troops are now scattered along the line of the railroad, and cannot be got together before next Wednesday. The wagons must all have arrived by that time, and if the enemy does not interfere sooner the movement upon Raccoon Mountain and Lookout Valley may then be attempted. Rosecrans, however, expects that as soon as the weather will allow the enemy will cross the river in force on our left, and then it will be necessary for us to fight a battle, or else to retreat from here and attempt to hold the line of the Cumberland Mountains. Such movement against this army he thinks will be made only in the event that they accumulate here a force enormously superior to ours, so that we should fight, if at all, at a great disadvantage. It is his opinion that they are collecting such a force, because, first it is a military probability; secondly, we hear of their gathering men here from every place whence troops can be scraped; thirdly, most of the deserters represent their numbers as greatly increased, and a smart negro boy, who came in this morning, said that two train loads arrived at Chickamauga Station yesterday, and they are coming all the time. But General Rosecrans says he inclines to the opinion that they will rather attempt to crush Burnside first. The same negro boy reports that he heard Jefferson Davis say in a speech at Chickamauga Station last Saturday that they would have East Tennessee if it took every soldier in the South.

When I suggested that his animals were to weak to move the army with any promptness and efficacy, Rosecrans answered that the case was by no means so bad as I supposed. It was true, he said, that the mules were a great deal worn down, but both they and the artillery horses were still capable of use. But even if he could get along without being obliged to evacuate Chattanooga, he said it was certain that even with Hooker he is too weak for any offensive movement. It is his opinion that 100,000 to 125,000 men is the smallest army with which a movement can be made upon Atlanta, with reasonable certainty of success.

[C. A. DANA.]

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

[Secretary of War.]