the erection of abatis or other obstacles, to be rendered so without delay [every possible exertion and dispatch used in completing the defense].
The remaining portion of the line that cannot be held without troops to be made as strong as possible, and then held by as few troops as will suffice to hold it against any feint or light attack; the balance of the troops to be held in reserve at suitable points ready to move to any point of the line where the enemy may attack in force. These reserves always to move promptly to the threatened points, or any part of the line, with alacrity and promptness, the general rule being to move to the sound of the heaviest firing.
The line to be picketed at least half a mile in advance of the positions on all approaches; thorough connections to be established on the picket-lines. The pickets and their reserves always when attacked to hold the enemy in check, using every obstacle, and compel him to develop his strength and purpose, also his position.
The pickets and officers of outposts to cause constant and close observation to be made of the enemy's lines, and every movement or change whatever in the enemy's position or troops to be reported instantly to their immediate headquarters and from there to general headquarters. The reserves to be stationed not only with a view to re-enforcing the front of each immediate command, but with a view to moving to any portion of the line.
Every commanding officer of a reserve, detachment, battery, regiment, brigade, and division will make himself entirely familiar with the line, and all the roads and ways of approach and movement along the line, so that by no possibility can any error occur as to movement, and so that he can move his command by night or day. This to be done at once, before night. A roadway to be opened along the rear of the line as soon as the defenses are completed, so that infantry or artillery can move along the line with facility to re-enforce or support any portion of it.
At the first gun fired each commander will cause his men to spring to arms and be ready to move. The trees in front of the line along Lookout Creek on the left should be felled, and that creek held as the picket-line.
In all probability the attack will be on General Howard's line, if any attack is made.
The highly important duty intrusted to this command demands and must receive from every officer and man the greatest vigilance and energy.
By command of Major-General Hooker:
Major-General and Chief of Staff.
HEADQUARTERS ELEVENTH AND TWELFTH CORPS, Lookout Valley, Tennessee, November 2, 1863.
The major-general commanding directs me to say that the following instructions will be observed by the troops of your command stationed at Bridgeport, Shellmound, Whiteside's, &c., on the line between here and Bridgeport:
They will seize and intrench strongly all the mountain passes