men fought like tigers, and Sherman could make little headway against such a determined and well-led foe.
With Union plans stymied, Grant directed Thomas to order his men forward. The Union commander hoped that if men from the Army of the Cumberland seized the first row of rifle pits, it would draw Confederate reinforcements from the flanks and assist Sherman and Hooker. To the shock of both Grant and Thomas, who were standing together, soldiers in the Army of the Cumberland not only crashed through the first line of defense, they kept on going. An annoyed Grant asked who gave that order, saying there would be 'hell to pay.' Thomas admitted knowing nothing. As the defenders fell back, the Yankee troops pursued so closely that Rebels higher up the slope could not fire for fear of shooting their own men. Confederates, moreover, had chosen their primary line on the actual, not the military, crest, which created dead spaces where gunfire could not touch anyone. Federals discovered that as they clambered up the incline, they gained these pockets of protection from enemy fire, and Rebels could not depress their artillery guns enough to hit them. On 25 November, the Army of the Cumberland exacted revenge'tor the Chickamauga disaster. They utterly shattered the center of Bragg's line.
Cleburne's division acted as rear guard and blocked Union pursuit. Still, Bragg had to fall back 30 miles (48km) to Dalton, Georgia, to regroup. The men in the Army of the Tennessee had no confidence in Bragg's leadership; the turmoil of high command and the detachment of Longstreefs men had caused severe damage to the morale of the men. A week after the débâcle at Chattanooga, Bragg resigned as army commander.
Nor did Longstreet's Knoxvllle expedition reap benefits to the Confederate cause. He advanced on Burnside, delayed, and when he did finally attack, it failed. After the rout of Bragg's army. Grant rushed Sherman with two corps to help relieve Burnside. As the Federals approached, Longstreet slipped away.
Major-Genera) Joseph Hooker and his troops drove the Rebels from Lookout Mountain Grant's plan called for Hooker to pinch the Confederates from the west while Sherman pressured them from the east and Thomas threatened their center. As it turned out Hooker carried Lookout Mountain. Sherman bogged down m narrow and well-defended terrain, and Thomas's men stormed the heights of Missionary Ridge, gaining a resounding victory for the Federals. (Library of Congress)
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