August 29, 1863: Crossing the river

Alexander McCook
Alexander McCook

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Map of Chickamauga

Rosecrans reports his armies crossing the Tennessee. The XX corps used the pontoon bridge at Caperton’s Ferry; others crossed at points upriver. Garfield orders McCook to take a position on the top of “the mountain” — not clear to me whether Sand Mountain or Lookout Mountain was intended at this point.


Official Records:

STEVENSON, ALA., August 29, 1863-10.45 p.m.
(Received 1.20 a.m. 30th.)
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
General-in-Chief:

Pontoon bridge across at Caperton’s Ferry. Two brigades over. Cavalry forded at two places. Brannan’s advance crossed at Battle Creek. Reynold’s advance at Shellmound. Reports not in yet, but suppose we have 100 prisoners. No fighting to amount to anything.

W. S. ROSECRANS,
Major-General.

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Official Records:

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Stevenson, August 29, 1863-1.30 a.m.
Major-General McCOOK:

The general commanding directs you, immediately on receipt of this order, to make preparations for crossing the Tennessee River. Throw your brigade, now at Caperton’s Ferry, across the river on pontoon-boats, at early dawn, and direct it to occupy the crest of the mountain, and take up a good defensive position, and, if necessary, throw up light intrenchments. Construct the bridge as soon as possible after the brigade is across. Send another brigade to take up a position at this end of the bridge. General Crook will throw over a portion of his brigade at daybreak, between Island Creek and Cox’s Ferry. General Reynolds crosses a small force at Shellmound; General Brannan another at Jasper. Two regiments of cavalry will cross at Bridgeport. It is not probable you will meet with much resistance. Report progress frequently.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. A. GARFIELD,
Brigadier-General, Chief of Staff.

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Official Records:

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Stevenson, Ala., August 29, 1863-9.30 a.m.
Major-General McCOOK,
Commanding Twentieth Army Corps:

Your two dispatches of 6.35 and 7.15 a.m. are received. The general commanding is gratified at the promptness and success of your movement in crossing the river. It is not possible to relieve your signal officers at this time, but Captain Merrill, chief of the signal corps will furnish you two officers at once, for temporary.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. A. GARFIELD,
Brigadier-General, Chief of Staff.

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