HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Allatoona, Georgia
City Point, Va.:
It will be a physical impossibility to protect the roads, now that Hood, Forrest, and Wheeler, and the whole batch of devils, are turned loose without home or habitation. I think Hood’s movements indicate a diversion to the Selma and Talladega Railroad at Blue Mountain, about sixty miles southwest of Rome, from which he will threaten Kingston, Bridgeport, and Decatur, Ala. I propose we break up the railroad from Chattanooga, and strike out with wagons for Milledgeville, Millen, and Savannah. Until we can repopulate Georgia, it is useless to occupy it, but the utter destruction of its roads, houses, and people will cripple their military resources. By attempting to hold the roads we will lose 1,000 men monthly, and will gain no result. I can make the march, and make Georgia howl. We have over 8,000 cattle and 3,000,000 of bread, but no corn; but we can forage in the interior of the State.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General, Commanding
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Allatoona, Ga.,
Chief of Staff:
Hood crossed the Chattahoochee, and before I was convinced of his design he had got across the Powder Springs. I immediately resolved to leave the Twentieth Corps (Slocum’s) at Atlanta, and push for Marietta. I reached the Kenesaw Mountain October 5, just in time to witness, at a distance, the attack on Allatoona. I had anticipated this attack, and had ordered from Rome General Corse, with re-enforcements, and the attack was met and handsomely repulsed, the enemy losing some 200 dead, and more than 1,000 wounded and prisoners. Our loss about 700 in the aggregate. The enemy captured the small garrisons at Big Shanty and Acworth, and burned about seven miles of our railroad; but we have, at Allatoona and Atlanta, an abundance of provisions. Hood, observing our approach, has moved rapidly back to Dallas and Van Wert, and I am watching him, in case he tries to reach Kingston or Rome. Atlanta is perfectly secure to us, and this army is better off out here than in camp.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General
SPECIAL FIELD ORDERS, HDQRS. MIL. DIV. OF THE MISS., In the Field, Allatoona, Ga., No. 88. October 9, 1864.
I. Captain C. A. Cilley, assistant adjutant-general volunteers, is hereby transferred from the Department of the Cumberland to the Department of the Ohio, and will report to Major General J. M. Schofield, commanding.
II. The ordnance depots at Nashville and Chattanooga will be considered as the general ordnance depots for the supply of the three armies of this DIVISION until further orders. Captain E. F. Townsend, depot ordnance officer at Nashville, and Lieutenant O. E. Michaelis, depot ordnance officer at Chattanooga, will report by letter to Captain T. G. Baylor, chief of ordnance, for instructions.
By order of Major General W. T. Sherman:
L. M. DAYTON, Aide-de-Camp.
Slocum Reports from Atlanta:
The bridge over the Chattahoochee is repaired, and the train has gone over. All is quiet here. I feel very anxious to send out a strong foraging party as soon as you deem it prudent. We need forage. I have not a pound for my own private horse, and all our animals have been out several days. Have you any news from Virginia, or about our routes north of Allatoona?
H. W. SLOCUM, Major-General, Commanding
Gerneral Raum Writes:
A dispatch just received from Resaca states that 1,000 rebel cavalry are between Villanow and Snake Creek Gap and 100 guarding the gap. Information received from citizens. A train was run off track near Dalton to-night; I suppose a construction train sent down to convey cross-ties to Acworth.
Genearl Corse Writes:
Your dispatch to General Raum and myself, signed Dayton, is just received. The bridges across the Etowah have been effectually destroyed yesterday evening. All intelligence I have indicates that Hood has not gone to Cedartown. I have just finished a new pontoon bridge over the Etowah, and have sent a cavalry force to reconnoiter toward Cedartown. I have my flanks and front well patrolled, and can give you more information tomorrow.
I Write Generals CORSE and Raum at
I am now, here and have troops so disposed that I can move them rapidly to Rome or Kingston if needed, but I do not wish to move them farther to the rear. We have plenty of forage and provisions, and can repair the road long before our necessities call for more supplies. Keep scouts and spies well out about Cedartown and Centre, and give me notice of Hood’s movements. If he goes to Blue Mountain let him go.
W. T. SHERMAN,Major-General, Commanding
ROME, GA., October 9, 1864.
Two men, one a deserter and the other a State prisoner, came inn today from WEST Point in different directions. I gather the following from them: No troops at Cedartown other than scouts. No force in any direction, except stragglers from Hood’s army escaping to their homes. A portion of Hood’s forces passed through Villa Rica to Blue Mountain on Thursday. A wagon train passed seven miles south of Cedartown toward Blue Mountain, guarded by the Fortieth Georgia Infantry. All seem discouraged and dissatisfied, and little or nothing to eat. Could hear nothing of Wheeler or his command. It is reported, to allay dissatisfaction against Hood, Davis has placed Beauregard in command. Some of the soldiers, thought Rome would be attacked, others not. They generally report Davis has ordered your communication to be broken and be kept broken, but they think it no use. Will have some spies in tonight and will send you further word. They reported large force at Snake Creek. I can find nothing about it.
J. M. CORSE, Brigadier-General
Communications are open to Nashville:
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Allatoona, October 9, 1864.
Major-General THOMAS, Nashville:
I came up here to relieve our road. Twentieth Corps at Atlanta. Hood reached our road and broke it up between Big Shanty and Acworth, and attacked Allatoona, but was repulsed. We have plenty of bread and meat, but forage scarcer. I want to destroy all the road below Chattanooga, including Atlanta, and make for the sea-coast. We cannot defend this long line of road. Replace all the guards on the road down as far as Chattanooga, and have a reserve force for the defense of Tennessee, and bring back your DIVISIONS of Newton and Morgan. We can have the road repaired in a week, and have plenty of grub in the mean time, but I expect Hood will make a break at Kingston, Rome, or some other point soon. Sorry that Forrest escaped. I doubt the necessity of repairing the road about Elk River and Athens, and suggest that you wait before giving orders for repairs.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General, Commanding
NASHVILLE, October 9, 1864 – 9 p. m.
I have learned within a day or two from rebel prisoners belonging to Forrest’s command, confirmed by some of our men who have escaped, that the railroad from Montgomery to Tuscumbia has been repaired, and is now being operated by the enemy. Do you approve of my adding from four to six of the new regiments to General Granger’s command, and direct him to seize and hold the Tennessee River as far down as Eastport? Rousseau reports that Forrest has escaped across the river, with the exception of 400 or 500 men, who are badly scattered. I have directed him to scout the country thoroughly, and destroy or capture all remaining this side of the river.
Within the past twenty-four hours there have been forwarded to the front eighty-one car-loads of forage, forty car-loads of subsistence stores, and a fair proportion of quartermaster and other stores. These shipments will be continued daily, and as soon as the road to the front is repaired they can be at once forwarded from Chattanooga. No other news this evening.
GEO. H. THOMAS, Major-General
Schofield Reports from Knoxville:
Finding it impracticable to reach Atlanta I came to this place to meet Burbridge and take the command with me, but he has not been heard from in the direction of Abingdon, and I presume his expedition has failed, and scouts from Cumberland bring the report that he has gone back into Kentucky. I am trying to get communication with him. My command in Kentucky will soon be remounted, when I will get together what force I can to aid and protect your railroad. General Meredith reports a force advancing in WEST Tennessee, and asks for re-enforcements. I may have to send more troops into WEST Tennessee. Please inform of your wishes as to myself and the troops within your reach.
J. M. SCHOFIELD, Major-General