Sunday, July 28, 2013

July 24, 1863 (Saturday): Rosecrans Job At Risk

Site of Wartime Elk River Bridge Estill Springs ( Stanfill)

Washington, D. C., July 24, 1863.
Major-General ROSECRANS, Nashville:
     GENERAL: The tone of some of your replies to my dispatches lately would indicate that you thought I was unnecessarily urging you forward. On the contrary, I have deemed it absolutely necessary, not only for the country but also for your own reputation, that your army should remain no longer inactive. The patience of the authorities here has been completely exhausted, and if I had not repeatedly promised to urge you forward, and begged for delay, you would have been removed from the command. It has been said that you are as inactive as was General Buell, and the pressure for your removal has been almost as strong as it has been in his case. I am well aware that people at a distance do not appreciate the obstacles and difficulties which they would see if nearer by; but, whether well founded or without any foundation at all, the dissatisfaction really exists, and I deem it my duty, as a friend, to represent it to you truly and fairly; and I think I ought to do so, if for no other reason, because it was at my earnest solicitations that you were given the command.
     Yours, truly,

    H. W. HALLECK,

Official Records, Series I., Vol. 23, Part 2, Page 552.

The Tullahoma Campaign consisted of a series of minor battles in an area 50 miles of so southeast of Nashville.  Heavy rains through the last week of June stifled Rosecrans' attempts to exploit advantages gained and on the 30th Bragg retreated behind the Tennessee River destroying  the bridges over the flooded Elk River.  This set the stage for the Chickamauga campaign.  Rosecrans remained in command perhaps only because the administration was more frustrated with Meade for not pursuing Lee effectively after Gettysburg and because events in the west were so generally favorable.

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