War of the Rebellion: Serial 056 Page 0424 KY ., SW. VA., Tennessee, MISS., N. ALA.,AND N. GA.

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[CHAP. XLIII.

orders from the War Department, is announced as chief commissary of the Army of the Cumberland, to date from November 26, 1863.

By command of Major General George H. Thomas:

WM. D. WHIPPLE,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

I. The several divisions composing this army, in the field will continue the march early to-morrow in the order in which they now are to Chattanooga, the Eleventh Corps, Major-General Howard commanding, and the division commanded by General Jeff. C. Davis crossing the Chickamauga by the stone bridge or any other to the east of it, and the divisions of the Fifteenth Corps by the pontoons near the mouth of the Chickamauga. The several commanders on reaching Chattanooga will rejoin the commands to which they belonged prior to the battle of Chattanooga.

II. In thus dissolving the army which fought the left wing of the battle of Chattanooga and afterward compelled Longstreet to raise the siege of Knoxville, the general commanding hereby thanks all officers and men for the promptness with which all orders were officers, and men for the promptness with which all orders were obeyed, more especially for the cheerfulness exhibited under privations of the severest kind. Without tents, without rations, with insufficient clothing, almost without shoes in midwinter, this army sprang with a generous impulse and marched to Knoxville, a distance of 120 miles, over the worst of roads, and relieved from danger 12,000 of our fellow-soldiers besieged by a dangerous enemy, and returned only after General Burnside had asked for partial re-enforcements, and that the remainder should return to the more important strategic field of Chattanooga. That all officers and soldiers who have participated in the hardships of this march may feel that their labors have been appreciated, the general commanding hereby makes public the letter he received at Knoxville at the hands of General Burnside, and he takes this method of conveying to this army the thanks which General Burnside so manfully tendered on the part of himself and of his brave garrison:

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE OHIO,

Knoxville, December 7, 1863.

Major General W. T. SHERMAN,

Commanding:

GENERAL: I desire to express to you and your command my most hearty thanks and gratitude for your promptness in coming to our relief during the siege of Knoxville, and I am satisfied passed, I do not deem for the present any other portion of your command but the corps of General Granger necessary for operations in this section, and inasmuch as General Grant has weakened the forces immediately with him in order to relieve us, thereby rendering the position of General Thomas less secure. I deem it advisable that all of the troops now here, save those commanded by General Granger, should return at once to within supporting distance of the forces in front of Bragg's army. In behalf of my command I desire again to thank you and your command for the kindness you have done us. I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A. E. BURNSIDE,

Major-General, Commanding.

By order of Major General W. T. Sherman:

R. M. SAWYER,

Assistant Adjutant-General.