War of the Rebellion: Serial 055 Page 0059 Chapter XLIII. THE CHATTANOOGA-RINGGOLD CAMPAIGN.

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command for the purpose. That force cannot by any efforts be made to exceed 18,000 men. The deficiency of animals, forage, and subsistence rendering any attacks by us on Bragg's line of communications at Cleveland or Charleston out of the question it follows that no important effort for the relief of Burnside can be made. Thomas has, however, determined to attempt to regain Lookout Mountain. A battery of eight 20-pounder Parrotts will be placed on the hills of Moccasin Point, directly opposite to Lookout, on the north shore of the river, enfilading western slope of mountain's head, while the batteries of Hooker, placed on the mamelons of Lookout Valley, will have a direct fire upon that slope. Under the cross-fire of these batteries the entire point of the mountain, including the railroad and wagon road, may be occupied by Howard's infantry.

Above this rise the precipitous palisades, 100 to 200 feet high, which support the plateau of the summit. To gain plateau, the division lately commanded by General Palmer, now stationed at Whiteside's and Shellmound, will be thrown forward to Trenton, which is and advantageous position for covering the approaches to Bridgeport and Shellmound. From Trenton there are several paths up the mountain which are accessible to infantry, and are but slightly guarded. The nearest road for artillery is that of Frick's Gap. After ascending the mountain there are three lines of breastworks to be carried before the northern extremity of the plateau, where the rebels have their battery and signal station, is taken. The occupation of the western slope below the palisades is comparatively easy, and if we gain the eastern slope also we may perhaps command the road to the plateau with our artillery, and even compel the enemy to abandon the ground between Chattanooga Creek and the base of the mountain, and withdraw his lines for some distance up the valley. In that case there will be a possibility of cutting off the supplies of the force on the plateau, and thus regaining complete possession of the mountain, but the relative positions of the two slopes of the point of the road to the plateau, and the rebel intrenchments near the base, are very imperfectly known, and can only be ascertained by trying. Thomas thinks Bragg still has 40,000 men in the lines here, militia included. Grant thinks his force does not exceed 30,000. Deserters report Hardee appointed to command Polk's corps. Rebel papers say Bragg tendered resignation. Davis refused it. Appeal of the 5th says decisive battle or great strategic movement now at hand. Deserters again report Johnston here.

[C. A. DANA.]

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

CHATTANOOGA, November 9, 1863-11 a.m.

Citizens from the Hiwassee country report that Bragg's forces in that region are falling back toward Atlanta. Deserters from the lines in our front confirm the report to some extent, but no one here believes it. Thomas thinks of a demonstration about Harrison by throwing bridge across the Tennessee, crossing 10,000 men, and building bridge-head, menacing rebel communications. Colonel I leave for Kingston at noon, accompanied by Wilson, of Grant's staff.

[C. A. DANA.]

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.