the delay of the brigade commanders in sending their reports to me, the last of which (that of Brigadier-General Moore) was received this day. The result of that day's operations and the character of the reports of brigade commanders, which are herewith inclosed, require of me a report more in detail than I would otherwise make it, and will excuse the personal cast which it assumes:
On November 9, in conformity with orders from army headquarters, being temporarily in command of Cheatham's division, I reported to Major General W. H. T. Walker. A reorganization of the army having just taken place, I had with me to report to General Walker but one brigade of the division, Wright's brigade having been left at Charleston, Tennessee, under orders, and Moore's and Walthall's brigades having not then reported to me under the new organization. My headquarters were located on the west side of Chattanooga Creek, at a point advised by General Walker, and my brigade was placed where he directed. On the same day I was invited by General Walker to accompany him and Lieutenant-General Hardee to the Craven house, which I did. The ground in that neighborhood was passed over, viewed, and discussed, but no line to fight on was recommended by any one present. Indeed, it was agreed on all hands that the position was one extremely difficult of defense against a strong force of the enemy advancing under cover of a heavy artillery fire. General Walker's opinion was expressed to the effect that at a certain point to which we had walked, which was a narrow pass, artillery should be placed in position extending to the left for a short distance toward the top of the mountain; that this would prevent any surprise by forces approaching in that direction, and at the same time they would answer the guns from the hills on the opposite side of Lookout Creek; also to have artillery near the Craven house to answer the Moccasin battery guns. By the first arrangement, he said, the artillery could have retreated by the road, and the infantry, which was put there to defend the artillery and pass, would have felt strong and been better satisfied and better able to hold their position. He said his experience was that infantry care but little for artillery if they have artillery to respond with, and that they are soon demoralized when they have quietly to sit and receive artillery fire without having some of their own to reply with. I ventured to express my own opinion to Lieutenant-General Hardee subsequently, and in it I differed somewhat (not without great presumption, but with equal diffidence) from that of so experienced a soldier as General Walker. If we were defeated on the slope the guns, as I thought, must inevitably be lost, from the impossibility of removing them under fire from their positions. My plan of defense was to place a gun in every available position on Lookout Point, and to sink the wheels or elevate the trails, so as to command the slope of the mountain. In addition to which I respectfully suggested that on the point a sharpshooter should be placed wherever a man could stand, so as to annoy the flank of the enemy. In my judgment there was no place northwest of the Craven house at which our infantry force could be held on the slope of the mountain, and in consequence of this firm conviction I gave orders to Brigadier-General Walthall, which are hereinafter mentioned.
Upon my return to the foot of the mountain, on November 9, I found Brigadier-General Walthall and his brigade in camp there. Brigadier-General Moore's brigade was then at the Craven house, where it had been for a time-how long I am not informed. General