War of the Rebellion: Serial 055 Page 0690 KY.,SW. VA.,Tennessee,MISS.,N. ALA.,AND N. GA. Chapter XLIII.

Search Civil War Official Records

report by an officer of General Moore's brigade that unless he was re-enforced his right would be turned. Receiving intelligence also from officers of pickets who had escaped that way that the Kelley's Ferry road was entirely open, I knew that the enemy had only to press forward on it to obtain control of our road from the mountain, and expecting that they certainly would do so, I rode to the top of the mountain to confer with General Stevenson, my immediate superior, upon the subject. We agreed that if the enemy did get possession of the road at or near the base of the mountain, I should withdraw the troops of my command at dark and join him on the top of the mountain, and he so directed. Availing myself of General Stevenson's writing material, I addressed written orders to the division quartermaster, commissary of subsistence, ordnance officer, and chief of artillery, who were in the plain below, to retire beyond Chattanooga Creek and then look for orders from corps headquarters, as I expected to be cut off from them.

After this short absence I returned to my position on the mountain side, and there remained until near dark, having sent orders to the brigade commanders that if we were cut off or overpowered we would retire by the top of the mountain, but to hold their positions if possible until dark, and to await further orders. When it was near dark, and when the firing had become rather desultory, I again went to General Stevenson's headquarters for final orders as to withdrawing the troops. I was there informed that General Bragg ordered us to retire down the mountain, the road being still open, and that we must assemble at the Gillespie house to make final arrangements. A guard having been detailed from my command for some subsistence stores on the top of the mountain, I went to relieve them, but found that it had already been done. Proceeding to the Gillespie house, at the base of the mountain, I received orders from General Bragg, through General Cheatham, as to the time and mode of withdrawing the troops, and immediately dispatched them to the brigade commanders by the assistant adjutant-general and the acting inspector-general of the division. In conformity with these orders, the troops retired south of Chattanooga Creek, and the bridge was destroyed.

On November 20, the date of the report nearest to the day of the battle, Moore's brigade had a total effective of 1,205, and Walthall's brigade a total effective of 1,489. The casualties in the first were 4 killed, 48 wounded, and 199 missing. In the second the casualties were 8 killed, 91 wounded, and 845 captured. In Pettus' brigade there were 9 killed, 38 wounded, and 9 missing.

General Moore ventures the opinion that if I had given proper orders a different result would have been accomplished. I beg leave to differ. The whole effective force at my command at the beginning was 2,694 men. Of these 1,044 had been captured, some had been wounded, and a few killed. The enemy's force was (as reported) a division and two brigades. They were in possession of the high grounds around the Craven house, from which, by General Moore's own statement, his left was completely enfiladed. Under these circumstances I was unwilling to hazard an advance movement with my shattered command, even aided by the three regiments under General Pettus, who was himself pressed by the enemy.

General Moore adds a report of the battle the next day on Missionary Ridge, when he was not under my command, and goes out of his way to say that he did not see me during the engagement. I did not think it necessary for me to show myself to him. If he had