On the night of the 16th and 17th, a fatigue party was ordered to report to Lieutenant Steele, of the Engineers, to commence work on the new line below the Craven house. By direction of Lieutenant-General Hardee, I went out in person to see that the work was progressing; found that there was a misunderstanding as to the place of reporting; walked down the road a considerable distance along the contemplated line, then went to the Craven house and ordered the detail to be reassembled and to report to Lieutenant Steele immediately.
This was at night. The work was directed to be done at night, as the working party would be under the fire of the Moccasin Point batteries. General Walthall's troops being some distance in advance of the proposed line, and exposed to the enemy's artillery fire, I ordered him on the 18th, with the approval of Lieutenant-General Hardee, to shorten his picket line, as he proposed, and notice of which I promptly gave to General Stevenson, and to bring back his troops in the rear (south) of the Craven house, leaving his pickets where they were, supported by one regiment. Upon inspection of the ground, General Walthall reported to me that, as General Moore's troops were also in the rear of the Craven house, there would not be room enough for his brigade between General Moore's and my headquarters, and said that as he supposed the order I had given him was permissive rather than directory, if I had no objections, he would keep his troops where they were. To this I assented, giving him at the same time instructions, if attacked by the enemy in heavy force, to fall back fighting over the rocks. I expected by the time his troops reached the Craven house to be with them and form line of battle, with Walthall's left against the cliff and his right at or near the Craven house, and Moore prolonging this line to the right. This was the general line pointed out by General Bragg, although it had not been defined by the engineers, nor had any work been done on it between the cliff and the Craven house. Beyond the Craven house there was no practicable line which was not enfiladed by the enemy's batteries, except the covered way prepared by General Jenkins, and the flank of that was exposed to the infantry attack.
On the afternoon of the 20th (I believe), I visited the works below the Craven house in company with Captain Henry, of the division staff, and spent some time in their inspection. These works, being a mere rifle-pit, would be of no service when the enemy were once in possession of the Craven house, as they would thence be taken in flank-almost in reverse.
On November 22, my own brigade was ordered to report to me, and was moved from the top of the mountain to the slope and placed in the position which I had desired General Walthall to take.
On the 23d, it was ordered to the foot of the mountain, out of my command, to take with Cumming's brigade the place on the line which had been occupied by Walker's division. My position and that of General Stevenson were thus each weakened by a brigade.
On the same day a brisk fire of artillery and small-arms was heard, coming from the extreme right. It was supposed to be a struggle for wood.
Late in the afternoon of the 23d, General Stevenson was placed in command of the forces west of Chattanooga Creek, Lieutenant-General Hardee having been removed to the extreme right, and on the