Hood's Atlanta Campaign Report

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I'm always perplexed when I read Hood's report that reflects on the Atlanta Campaign. His report while he was in command of the Army was simply supposed to contain what happened to it and what it did while under his command, but he explained in great depth what happened and how it was lead in the months preceding his appointment to its command.

First, I think this was mostly unheard of. Few reports, if any that I have read, dressed down the predecessor's actions and intent.

But, one thing that struck me was the importance of offensive action that he relates over and over in regard to an army's success early in his report.

The whole thing can be read here: https://ehistory.osu.edu/books/official-records/074/0628

But then, following his actions at the Battle of Atlanta and then Ezra Church a few days later, he admits something that really stuck out to me. First, I will note that in the following portions of his report - he is never responsible for what happened.

The first is regarding Peach Tree Creek.

Owing to the demonstrations of the enemy on the right, it became necessary to extend Cheatham a division front to the right. To do this Hardee and Stewart were each ordered to extend a half division front to close the interval. Foreseeing that some confusion and delay might result, I was careful to call General Hardee's attention to the importance of having a staff officer on his left to see that the left did not take more than half a division front. This unfortunately was not attended to, and the line closed to the right, causing Stewart to move two or three times the proper distance. In consequence of this the attack was delayed until nearly 4 p. m. At this hour the attack began as ordered, Stewart's corps carrying the temporary works in his front. Hardee failed to push the attack, as ordered, and thus the enemy, remaining in possession of his works on Stewart's right, compelled Stewart by an enfilade fire to abandon the position he had carried. I have every reason to believe that our attack would have been successful had my order been executed.

At the Battle of Atlanta:

Hardee failed to entirely turn the enemy's left as directed, took position and attacked his flank.

At Utoy Creek:

On the 26th of August the enemy abandoned his works on the extreme right and took up a line, the left resting in front of our works on the Dalton railroad and extending to the railroad crossing the river. Again he withdrew, on the night of the 27th, across the Utoy Creek, throwing one corps across the river to hold the railroad crossing and the intermediate points. His left then rested on the Chattahoochee River, strongly fortified and extending across the West Point railroad. The corps defending the crossing of the Chattahoochee, his works on this side of the river, and the obstacle formed by the Utoy and Camp Creeks, rendered it impossible for me to attack him with any possibility of success between the river and railroad.

Isn't that interesting? Hood was placed in a position that rendered it impossible.

At Jonesboro:

Hardee's and Lee's corps moved accordingly, Hardee in command. It was impressed upon General Hardee that the fate of Atlanta depended upon his success. Six hours before I had any information of the result of his attack I ordered Lee to return in the direction of Atlanta, to be ready to commence the movement indicated in the event of success, and if unsuccessful to cover the evacuation of Atlanta, which would thus be compelled. As it turned out unsuccessful it allowed the enemy the opportunity either to strike us as we marched out of Atlanta or to concentrate on Hardee.

I did not fear the destruction of Hardee before Stewart and Lee could join him, as his position on a ridge between two rivers I thought strong in front, and want of time would prevent the enemy from attacking him in flank. The small loss in Hardee's corps, and the much greater loss of the enemy, show my views to have been correct. The attack at Jonesborough failed, though the number of men on our side considerably exceeded that of the enemy. The vigor of the attack may be in some sort imagined when only 1,400 were killed and wounded out of the two corps engaged. The failure
[Hardee's] necessitated the evacuation of Atlanta.

I hope Hood never learned of the forces confronting Hardee - because that was a bold statement!

Isn't it interesting though that Hood has chosen to have a subordinate that has failed him over and over on this campaign be in command of the largest part of his army. In my experience and reading of history, the commander always goes with the larger force and is in command of the most important part of the action. Hood has - in this case however - given that distinction to Hardee. Interesting.

Now, going back slightly in his report I found this mention to be intriguing...

From this time [July 30] till the 26th of August there is nothing of any particular movement to mention. The enemy gradually extended his right, and I was compelled to follow his movement

But early in his report, he went on so much about how maintaining the attack would provide more success than reacting to the enemy. And now he finds himself in Johnston's shoes - constantly having to extend his army in the direction of the enemy movement.

This report was submitted to the War Department on February 15, 1865.

This is something interesting to include along with it. Governor Isham Harris of Tennessee had been on the entire Atlanta Campaign and Tennessee Campaign with the Army of Tennessee and General Hood. This was recorded by Campbell Brown in his memoir.

"On Harris’ first arrival in Richmond, he went to the Spotswood, and being tired and dusty, went immediately to his room and ordered a bath. One of Hood’s Staff had seen him at the office and gone straight to Hood’s room with the news. Before Gov. Harris had fairly reached his room, this Staff officer came in hot haste to beg him to come to Hood’s room, that he was very anxious to see him. He sent back word that he was just off the cars, in his dirty clothes and would come as soon as he had bathed and dressed. A message came back not to mind the bathing but please come at once. He went down. Hood told him he wanted him to listen to his official report before it was handed in, and that a fair copy of it was just finished. As he spoke, the clerk came in with it. Hood took it and read a page, then asked Harris’ opinion. “Go on General, read the whole of it, and then I will mention any points that seem to me to require correction.” Hood finished, and as he went over the last part, Harris was surprised to find the responsibility for the failure at Spring Hill still laid on Cheatham.

Hood having again asked his opinion, Harris replied “Well, General, I must tell you frankly that all this part relative to Gen. Johnston’s previous movements has no business in your report. You are not reporting Gen. Johnston’s campaign, it certainly does not appear in good taste for you to criticize it. If I were to advise you, I would say strike out all that precedes the commencement of your own command, state simply the numbers and position of your troop then and your subsequent movements”. Hood attempted to argue the correctness of his course, but after some discussion gave it up, and said in a tone almost of anguish; “You are right, Governor, I wish to God I had seen you sooner, but it is too late, - I cannot change it now.” Harris continued to urge him for a time, but Hood repeated his former answer with yet greater emphasis. Harris told me his own unavoidable inference at the time was that Hood had been put up to write this by some one else, and that it had been seen and approved by either the President or Secretary of War.

As to the style of the report, he found it containing a great many adjectives and phrases perfectly useless, intended to add force, but in reality taking away the dignity of an official report, and substituting the violence of a party document. His opinion from the style was that it was the production of one of Hood’s friends, the same Woolley who wrote a violent attack on Gen. Bragg. He induced Hood to let him strike out some of these, and they went over the whole report together, making many verbal alterations. The error with regard to Cheatham he insisted on having corrected, and after a while got most of it struck out or changed. During the whole of this remarkable interview, he was struck with the fact that Hood was a puppet in the hands of others who were sacrificing him to gain their own ends, and striking through him a blow at Gen. Johnston.”


What think you?
 
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It sounds the amount of in fighing really damaged the AOT's ability to function
I'm always perplexed when I read Hood's report that reflects on the Atlanta Campaign. His report while he was in command of the Army was simply supposed to contain what happened to it and what it did while under his command, but he explained in great depth what happened and how it was lead in the months preceding his appointment to its command.

First, I think this was mostly unheard of. Few reports, if any that I have read, dressed down the predecessor's actions and intent.

But, one thing that struck me was the importance of offensive action that he relates over and over in regard to an army's success early in his report.

The whole thing can be read here: https://ehistory.osu.edu/books/official-records/074/0628

But then, following his actions at the Battle of Atlanta and then Ezra Church a few days later, he admits something that really stuck out to me. First, I will note that in the following portions of his report - he is never responsible for what happened.

The first is regarding Peach Tree Creek.

Owing to the demonstrations of the enemy on the right, it became necessary to extend Cheatham a division front to the right. To do this Hardee and Stewart were each ordered to extend a half division front to close the interval. Foreseeing that some confusion and delay might result, I was careful to call General Hardee's attention to the importance of having a staff officer on his left to see that the left did not take more than half a division front. This unfortunately was not attended to, and the line closed to the right, causing Stewart to move two or three times the proper distance. In consequence of this the attack was delayed until nearly 4 p. m. At this hour the attack began as ordered, Stewart's corps carrying the temporary works in his front. Hardee failed to push the attack, as ordered, and thus the enemy, remaining in possession of his works on Stewart's right, compelled Stewart by an enfilade fire to abandon the position he had carried. I have every reason to believe that our attack would have been successful had my order been executed.

At the Battle of Atlanta:

Hardee failed to entirely turn the enemy's left as directed, took position and attacked his flank.

At Utoy Creek:

On the 26th of August the enemy abandoned his works on the extreme right and took up a line, the left resting in front of our works on the Dalton railroad and extending to the railroad crossing the river. Again he withdrew, on the night of the 27th, across the Utoy Creek, throwing one corps across the river to hold the railroad crossing and the intermediate points. His left then rested on the Chattahoochee River, strongly fortified and extending across the West Point railroad. The corps defending the crossing of the Chattahoochee, his works on this side of the river, and the obstacle formed by the Utoy and Camp Creeks, rendered it impossible for me to attack him with any possibility of success between the river and railroad.

Isn't that interesting? Hood was placed in a position that rendered it impossible.

At Jonesboro:

Hardee's and Lee's corps moved accordingly, Hardee in command. It was impressed upon General Hardee that the fate of Atlanta depended upon his success. Six hours before I had any information of the result of his attack I ordered Lee to return in the direction of Atlanta, to be ready to commence the movement indicated in the event of success, and if unsuccessful to cover the evacuation of Atlanta, which would thus be compelled. As it turned out unsuccessful it allowed the enemy the opportunity either to strike us as we marched out of Atlanta or to concentrate on Hardee.

I did not fear the destruction of Hardee before Stewart and Lee could join him, as his position on a ridge between two rivers I thought strong in front, and want of time would prevent the enemy from attacking him in flank. The small loss in Hardee's corps, and the much greater loss of the enemy, show my views to have been correct. The attack at Jonesborough failed, though the number of men on our side considerably exceeded that of the enemy. The vigor of the attack may be in some sort imagined when only 1,400 were killed and wounded out of the two corps engaged. The failure
[Hardee's] necessitated the evacuation of Atlanta.

I hope Hood never learned of the forces confronting Hardee - because that was a bold statement!

Isn't it interesting though that Hood has chosen to have a subordinate that has failed him over and over on this campaign be in command of the largest part of his army. In my experience and reading of history, the commander always goes with the larger force and is in command of the most important part of the action. Hood has - in this case however - given that distinction to Hardee. Interesting.

Now, going back slightly in his report I found this mention to be intriguing...

From this time [July 30] till the 26th of August there is nothing of any particular movement to mention. The enemy gradually extended his right, and I was compelled to follow his movement

But early in his report, he went on so much about how maintaining the attack would provide more success than reacting to the enemy. And now he finds himself in Johnston's shoes - constantly having to extend his army in the direction of the enemy movement.

This report was submitted to the War Department on February 15, 1865.

This is something interesting to include along with it. Governor Isham Harris of Tennessee had been on the entire Atlanta Campaign and Tennessee Campaign with the Army of Tennessee and General Hood. This was recorded by Campbell Brown in his memoir.

"On Harris’ first arrival in Richmond, he went to the Spotswood, and being tired and dusty, went immediately to his room and ordered a bath. One of Hood’s Staff had seen him at the office and gone straight to Hood’s room with the news. Before Gov. Harris had fairly reached his room, this Staff officer came in hot haste to beg him to come to Hood’s room, that he was very anxious to see him. He sent back word that he was just off the cars, in his dirty clothes and would come as soon as he had bathed and dressed. A message came back not to mind the bathing but please come at once. He went down. Hood told him he wanted him to listen to his official report before it was handed in, and that a fair copy of it was just finished. As he spoke, the clerk came in with it. Hood took it and read a page, then asked Harris’ opinion. “Go on General, read the whole of it, and then I will mention any points that seem to me to require correction.” Hood finished, and as he went over the last part, Harris was surprised to find the responsibility for the failure at Spring Hill still laid on Cheatham.

Hood having again asked his opinion, Harris replied “Well, General, I must tell you frankly that all this part relative to Gen. Johnston’s previous movements has no business in your report. You are not reporting Gen. Johnston’s campaign, it certainly does not appear in good taste for you to criticize it. If I were to advise you, I would say strike out all that precedes the commencement of your own command, state simply the numbers and position of your troop then and your subsequent movements”. Hood attempted to argue the correctness of his course, but after some discussion gave it up, and said in a tone almost of anguish; “You are right, Governor, I wish to God I had seen you sooner, but it is too late, - I cannot change it now.” Harris continued to urge him for a time, but Hood repeated his former answer with yet greater emphasis. Harris told me his own unavoidable inference at the time was that Hood had been put up to write this by some one else, and that it had been seen and approved by either the President or Secretary of War.

As to the style of the report, he found it containing a great many adjectives and phrases perfectly useless, intended to add force, but in reality taking away the dignity of an official report, and substituting the violence of a party document. His opinion from the style was that it was the production of one of Hood’s friends, the same Woolley who wrote a violent attack on Gen. Bragg. He induced Hood to let him strike out some of these, and they went over the whole report together, making many verbal alterations. The error with regard to Cheatham he insisted on having corrected, and after a while got most of it struck out or changed. During the whole of this remarkable interview, he was struck with the fact that Hood was a puppet in the hands of others who were sacrificing him to gain their own ends, and striking through him a blow at Gen. Johnston.”


What think you?
I think Davis should've stayed with Johnston. The infighting was so lame, your post lays that out pretty clearly.
 
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I think you have done a remarkable job of showing Hood's laying the blame of Atlanta on Hardee. When Hood moved westward and north toward Alabama, wasn't Hardee left behind to contest Sherman's advancement; and was Hardee removed form Hood's command?
Lubliner.
I know that Hardee requested a transfer and was given one, but without checking, I don't recall where he went, but I believe it was a departmental command.
 
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Coonewah Creek

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On the 26th of August the enemy abandoned his works on the extreme right and took up a line, the left resting in front of our works on the Dalton railroad and extending to the railroad crossing the river. Again he withdrew, on the night of the 27th, across the Utoy Creek, throwing one corps across the river to hold the railroad crossing and the intermediate points. His left then rested on the Chattahoochee River, strongly fortified and extending across the West Point railroad. The corps defending the crossing of the Chattahoochee, his works on this side of the river, and the obstacle formed by the Utoy and Camp Creeks, rendered it impossible for me to attack him with any possibility of success between the river and railroad.

Isn't that interesting? Hood was placed in a position that rendered it impossible.
There was no excuse for Hood allowing Sherman to leave only one corps protecting his line of communication across the Chattahoochee and not sortie the Army of Tennessee against it. I remember somewhere Hood made the excuse that he had to maintain the AoT as a screen between Sherman and the Andersonville prison camp until the prisoners could be removed, but that sounds like weak hindsight.
 

Tin cup

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Hood can "believe that our attack would have been successful " but ultimately he just wasn't in charge of, or overseeing his troops like he should have been. The AoT was not an army you could just wind up and point in a direction, and let them go.

A typical scenario is the flank movement at Atlanta against McPherson's troops. That was marred by him actually not knowing details of the rout, or the obstacles to be encountered. He didn't take into account the time and distance, and how worn out the troops were on their late start. Then he bungled the rest of the troop movements latter in the day. Jackson, or Lee he was not.

Kevin Dally
 
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We must remember, Hood was always willing to lay blame on anyone that remotely had anything that Hood did. Hood did this in the Tennessee Campaign also. Reading his book, Advance and Retreat, it is full of later years letters Hood had ask for to rebuke most of J.E. Johnston book.
Page after page Hood attempts to lay blame on everyone but himself. Hood was the overall commander of the A.O.T in July 1864, from that point on, the blame lies on him for any action that army took. If a Corp commander failed, Hood is responsible for that action. You can’t be so one sided as if Hood would have gained victories I’m sure Hood would have heaped all the accolades upon himself and his great generalship. In Hoods case he should also heap the losses in his battles.
 

OpnCoronet

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All Reports can hardly be anything else than self-serving of the one(s) authorizing and vetting the Report. This is especially truen when reporting failure. Nothing new Here, it is the nature of the beast.
 

nc native

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John B. Hood and Braxton Bragg have a lot in common when it comes to passing the buck for their mistakes on the battlefield and blaming them on their subordinate commanders. Choosing these two men for overall command of the Army of the Tennessee were two of the worst decisions that Jefferson Davis made during the Civil War.
 
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Dead Parrott

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I'm always perplexed when I read Hood's report that reflects on the Atlanta Campaign. His report while he was in command of the Army was simply supposed to contain what happened to it and what it did while under his command, but he explained in great depth what happened and how it was lead in the months preceding his appointment to its command.

First, I think this was mostly unheard of. Few reports, if any that I have read, dressed down the predecessor's actions and intent.

But, one thing that struck me was the importance of offensive action that he relates over and over in regard to an army's success early in his report.

The whole thing can be read here: https://ehistory.osu.edu/books/official-records/074/0628

But then, following his actions at the Battle of Atlanta and then Ezra Church a few days later, he admits something that really stuck out to me. First, I will note that in the following portions of his report - he is never responsible for what happened.

The first is regarding Peach Tree Creek.

Owing to the demonstrations of the enemy on the right, it became necessary to extend Cheatham a division front to the right. To do this Hardee and Stewart were each ordered to extend a half division front to close the interval. Foreseeing that some confusion and delay might result, I was careful to call General Hardee's attention to the importance of having a staff officer on his left to see that the left did not take more than half a division front. This unfortunately was not attended to, and the line closed to the right, causing Stewart to move two or three times the proper distance. In consequence of this the attack was delayed until nearly 4 p. m. At this hour the attack began as ordered, Stewart's corps carrying the temporary works in his front. Hardee failed to push the attack, as ordered, and thus the enemy, remaining in possession of his works on Stewart's right, compelled Stewart by an enfilade fire to abandon the position he had carried. I have every reason to believe that our attack would have been successful had my order been executed.

At the Battle of Atlanta:

Hardee failed to entirely turn the enemy's left as directed, took position and attacked his flank.

At Utoy Creek:

On the 26th of August the enemy abandoned his works on the extreme right and took up a line, the left resting in front of our works on the Dalton railroad and extending to the railroad crossing the river. Again he withdrew, on the night of the 27th, across the Utoy Creek, throwing one corps across the river to hold the railroad crossing and the intermediate points. His left then rested on the Chattahoochee River, strongly fortified and extending across the West Point railroad. The corps defending the crossing of the Chattahoochee, his works on this side of the river, and the obstacle formed by the Utoy and Camp Creeks, rendered it impossible for me to attack him with any possibility of success between the river and railroad.

Isn't that interesting? Hood was placed in a position that rendered it impossible.

At Jonesboro:

Hardee's and Lee's corps moved accordingly, Hardee in command. It was impressed upon General Hardee that the fate of Atlanta depended upon his success. Six hours before I had any information of the result of his attack I ordered Lee to return in the direction of Atlanta, to be ready to commence the movement indicated in the event of success, and if unsuccessful to cover the evacuation of Atlanta, which would thus be compelled. As it turned out unsuccessful it allowed the enemy the opportunity either to strike us as we marched out of Atlanta or to concentrate on Hardee.

I did not fear the destruction of Hardee before Stewart and Lee could join him, as his position on a ridge between two rivers I thought strong in front, and want of time would prevent the enemy from attacking him in flank. The small loss in Hardee's corps, and the much greater loss of the enemy, show my views to have been correct. The attack at Jonesborough failed, though the number of men on our side considerably exceeded that of the enemy. The vigor of the attack may be in some sort imagined when only 1,400 were killed and wounded out of the two corps engaged. The failure
[Hardee's] necessitated the evacuation of Atlanta.

I hope Hood never learned of the forces confronting Hardee - because that was a bold statement!

Isn't it interesting though that Hood has chosen to have a subordinate that has failed him over and over on this campaign be in command of the largest part of his army. In my experience and reading of history, the commander always goes with the larger force and is in command of the most important part of the action. Hood has - in this case however - given that distinction to Hardee. Interesting.

Now, going back slightly in his report I found this mention to be intriguing...

From this time [July 30] till the 26th of August there is nothing of any particular movement to mention. The enemy gradually extended his right, and I was compelled to follow his movement

But early in his report, he went on so much about how maintaining the attack would provide more success than reacting to the enemy. And now he finds himself in Johnston's shoes - constantly having to extend his army in the direction of the enemy movement.

This report was submitted to the War Department on February 15, 1865.

This is something interesting to include along with it. Governor Isham Harris of Tennessee had been on the entire Atlanta Campaign and Tennessee Campaign with the Army of Tennessee and General Hood. This was recorded by Campbell Brown in his memoir.

"On Harris’ first arrival in Richmond, he went to the Spotswood, and being tired and dusty, went immediately to his room and ordered a bath. One of Hood’s Staff had seen him at the office and gone straight to Hood’s room with the news. Before Gov. Harris had fairly reached his room, this Staff officer came in hot haste to beg him to come to Hood’s room, that he was very anxious to see him. He sent back word that he was just off the cars, in his dirty clothes and would come as soon as he had bathed and dressed. A message came back not to mind the bathing but please come at once. He went down. Hood told him he wanted him to listen to his official report before it was handed in, and that a fair copy of it was just finished. As he spoke, the clerk came in with it. Hood took it and read a page, then asked Harris’ opinion. “Go on General, read the whole of it, and then I will mention any points that seem to me to require correction.” Hood finished, and as he went over the last part, Harris was surprised to find the responsibility for the failure at Spring Hill still laid on Cheatham.

Hood having again asked his opinion, Harris replied “Well, General, I must tell you frankly that all this part relative to Gen. Johnston’s previous movements has no business in your report. You are not reporting Gen. Johnston’s campaign, it certainly does not appear in good taste for you to criticize it. If I were to advise you, I would say strike out all that precedes the commencement of your own command, state simply the numbers and position of your troop then and your subsequent movements”. Hood attempted to argue the correctness of his course, but after some discussion gave it up, and said in a tone almost of anguish; “You are right, Governor, I wish to God I had seen you sooner, but it is too late, - I cannot change it now.” Harris continued to urge him for a time, but Hood repeated his former answer with yet greater emphasis. Harris told me his own unavoidable inference at the time was that Hood had been put up to write this by some one else, and that it had been seen and approved by either the President or Secretary of War.

As to the style of the report, he found it containing a great many adjectives and phrases perfectly useless, intended to add force, but in reality taking away the dignity of an official report, and substituting the violence of a party document. His opinion from the style was that it was the production of one of Hood’s friends, the same Woolley who wrote a violent attack on Gen. Bragg. He induced Hood to let him strike out some of these, and they went over the whole report together, making many verbal alterations. The error with regard to Cheatham he insisted on having corrected, and after a while got most of it struck out or changed. During the whole of this remarkable interview, he was struck with the fact that Hood was a puppet in the hands of others who were sacrificing him to gain their own ends, and striking through him a blow at Gen. Johnston.”


What think you?
Fascinating stuff! And good fodder for discussion. Thanks for sharing.
 

Rhea Cole

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First thing, I commend you for going to an original source. Unfortunately, Hood's reports & memoirs often have more to do with his ongoing disputes with just about every other General Officer in the Confederate Army than what actually happened on the battlefield. An eminent historian, whose name escapes me at the moment, said that more lies have been said about the subject of warfare than all other human endeavors put together. Oh so true, don't you know?

In his memoir, Hood explains his decision for breaking contact with Sherman & falling back into Northeastern Alabama as a predetermined plan to advance on Nashville & defeat the forces gathered there under General Thomas. This is easily contradicted by the fact that Hood did not receive intelligence concerning Thomas' command until two weeks after the alleged decision. He simply claims to have made his decision based on information he clearly did not posses.

Hood's chronic inability to either keep the timeline straight or recall the order of events occurred when he reported to General Beauregard on October 23, 1864 that Forrest had reported the crossing of the Tennessee at Guntersville was too well guarded for Hood to cross there. The record clearly shows that not only had Hood not received a report from Forrest, as he told Beauregard, Forrest did not receive orders to join Hood for another three days.

One of the really odd things about Hood's reports & memoirs is his habit of claiming to know about things that had not happened yet. At a seminar I attended during the 150th, one of the historians who has studied Hood for years said that a person taking Hood's reports at face value would be forced to conclude that he had a real crystal ball.

I live near Nashville, so the anniversary of the Battles of Franklin & Nashville are fresh in my mind. The disconnect between Hood's reports, his memoirs, post-war disputes with other officers are a miasma of disinformation. In his reports to Richmond after the Battle of Franklin, Hood deliberately obscured the loss of sixty-two hundred men with the phrases that the loss of officers "was excessively large in proportion to the loss of men." & that the large number of wounded included "a very large proportion of slightly wounded men."
Hood's report to Sec. Seddon, December 5, 1864

It was not until after an astonishing month long delay that either his immediate superior General Beauregard or Richmond learned that Hood had been defeated at Nashville. Hood even ignored a direct order from Beauregard on January 1st to report on what had happened at Nashville. OR, XLV, Pt, 2, p. 699

When he finally sent Beauregard a report, Hood stated that his entire Tennessee Campaign had only resulted in 10,000 casualties. OR XLV, Pt, 1, p. 600 That claim was absolutely false. Hood's mental state or mental processes or whatever you wish to call it defy logical analysis.

It was only when General Taylor visited the Army of Tennessee in Tupelo MS that Beauregard learned that only fifteen thousand men, half of them without arms, was all that was left of Hood's army. Almost all of his artillery had been either captured, abandoned or destroyed. Transport wagons had been annihilated. Thirteen thousand small arms had been lost. The army was almost without food, blankets or winter clothing. When Beauregard arrived in Tupelo, Hood had no option but to finally admit the truth & applied to Richmond to be received of his command. OR XLV, Pt 2 pp 756-788

Note:
Hood would spend the rest of his life attempting to explain away what had happened in Tennessee during the winter of 1864-65. The reason you are having so much trouble understanding what General Hood wrote is that , in addition to the obscurities of 19th Century Army language, you simply can't take anything he says at face value.
 
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Rhea Cole

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All Reports can hardly be anything else than self-serving of the one(s) authorizing and vetting the Report. This is especially truen when reporting failure. Nothing new Here, it is the nature of the beast.
Officers of both armies swore an oath to tell the truth. I have no idea what reports you have been reading, but however much an individual wished to see things through rose colored glasses. the numbers they presented were subject to meticulous review. That why officers, e.g., Hood, Wheeler, Morgan, who did habitually obscure the truth stand out so clearly. Wheeler, in particular was repeatedly called out for wildly inaccurate returns by inspector generals. A thousand men fully equipped, mounted & ready to ride became 120 when the inspectors came around. Indeed certain individuals did attempt to color their reports, but the system was in place to shine a light on the minutia of reality.
 

Rhea Cole

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There was plenty of blame to go around in that army when they failed over and over. Bragg, Hood, Polk, Hardee, Wheeler, Cheatham, DH Hill, etc etc
There was plenty of blame. However, the only one who was sending a stream of inaccurate & misleading reports to Richmond was Hood. It was Hood's reports or the lack of them, that kept his superiors in the dark until General Taylor's shocking report from Tupelo that Richmond finally grasped the scope of Hood's disastrous command of the Army of Tennessee.
 

OpnCoronet

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Officers of both armies swore an oath to tell the truth. I have no idea what reports you have been reading, but however much an individual wished to see things through rose colored glasses. the numbers they presented were subject to meticulous review. That why officers, e.g., Hood, Wheeler, Morgan, who did habitually obscure the truth stand out so clearly. Wheeler, in particular was repeatedly called out for wildly inaccurate returns by inspector generals. A thousand men fully equipped, mounted & ready to ride became 120 when the inspectors came around. Indeed certain individuals did attempt to color their reports, but the system was in place to shine a light on the minutia of reality.



All very neat, one might even say Rose Colored, but, in fact, the one writing the Report sets the parameters of Truth.

If one wants to go outside the parameters of theoriginal Report itself, then that is a matter for another report.
 
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