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The Battle of Stone River
written by "Kendall, Henry Myron"
...ade on the roads to Cumberland Gap, but no engagement was brought on. It soon appeared that Bragg did not intend to again give battle in Kentucky, but would withdraw into Tennessee and join the force under Breckenridge which had been left to watch Nashville during the invasion of Kentucky. Buell concluded that Bragg would concentrate his entire force near Nashville and endeavor to capture that place and somewhere in its vicinity fight a decisive battle which would determine the fate of West Tennessee and Kentucky. Buell therefore discontinued his pursuit and turned his forces toward Nashville, placing them mainly at Bowling Green, Glasgow, and other points on the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. A great deal of pressure had been brought to bear upon the Administration to make a campaign in East Tennessee, a mountainous region whose people were mostly loyal. General Halleck in Washington planned a campaign in that region and called upon Buell to carry it out. But Buell declined. His reasons were that such a campaign would place him at a long distance from Louisville, his base, dependent upon wagon transportation alone over almost impassable roads, in a country devoid of supplies and especially suitable to defensive operations. Again, he would be forced to make great detachments to guard Nashville and his lines of communications, since these would be especially open to the attack of the enemy, who was well [Pg 4]known to be superior in cavalry. Buell considered Nashville the vital point of the theatre, and was satisfied that it would be the main point of Bragg’s attack. He therefore ignored Halleck’s elaborate plan and set about repairing the railway to Nashville and moving his troops in that direction. His previous slowness and indecision had brought him greatly into disfavor, and on the 30th of October he was relieved by Major-General William S. Rosecrans. The district was called thereafter the Department of the Cumberla...

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