22 September 1863: “If they are unsuccessful, we must nerve ourselves to face many new trials.”

ITEM DESCRIPTION: editorial, The Daily Journal (Wilmington, N. C.), 22 September 1863, page 2, column 1.  NB. The editorial describes the Battle of Chickamauga, fought 19-20 September 1863.









A GREAT BATTLE has been fought, or is still progressing, on the line of the Railroad between Atlanta and Chattanooga, the contest opening about thirteen miles Southwest of the latter place.  The telegraph, of course gives us all the information that we have yet received in regard to it.  That the fighting has been heavy and that it will most probably be renewed, if it has indeed yet ceased, appears to be placed beyond the shadow of a doubt.  Our losses are large—those of the enemy are said to be very large.

On Saturday and the most of Sunday, although the fortunes of the field leaned slightly to our side there was yet no decided advantage gained.  If full credit is to be given to the dispatch of the operator, we had on Monday gained full possession of the field and were pursuing the enemy, who will doubtless fall back upon its entrenchments at Chattanooga, from which, at the date of the last accounts he was said to be not more than six or seven miles distant.  We hope, however, that he will not be let rest there, as we know that fresh troops are still arriving and will continue to arrive at BRAGG’S camp, enabling him to press on and grasp the substantial fruits as well as the mere name of victory.  So far the news simply indicates one of those hard won fields in which we have gained the ground off which we have forced the enemy and no more.

We presume that additional details may be expected at any time.  Every day is big with the prospect of startling events, and any day may bring the news of their occurrence.  Things cannot rest as they are now.  The ball is opened, and little relaxation of effort need be looked for until the campaign closes, which, in those mountainous regions, it will probably do by the beginning, or, at farthest, the middle of November.  Our armies in the West have a mighty work before them in the next six weeks.  The redemption of Tennessee—the bringing of hope to Kentucky, the clearing out of the Yankees from Northern Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama. We trust that their numbers may be found sufficient for these purposes; their valor will not be doubted.

The Yankees say that LEE is depleted, and yet they do not advance upon him.  Perhaps MEADE is only glad that LEE does not advance upon him.  No doubt MEADE himself is badly depleted, and his army merely a nursery of conscripts, which he is licking into shape.  The best troops of the Yankee army are out West at this time.  They mean to take Richmond by operating against its connections with the Southwest.  We have no doubt our authorities are at last aware of this state of things, and will adapt their measures to this changed position of affairs.

The information from the trans-Mississippi States is so totally unreliable that, indeed, it is only by a sort of false courtesy that we call it information at all.  If we had not heard a rumour from Arkansas, Western Louisiana or Texas, for three months, we would have been just as well informed as we are—perhaps better, for although we might have missed a few small grams of truth, we would, on the other hand, have been spared many bushels of falsehood.

If our armies are successful in Tennessee, we need fear no serious movement by GRANT against Mobile, nor any fresh movements in Mississippi.  If they are unsuccessful, we must nerve ourselves to face many new trials.

CITATION: The Daily Journal (Wilmington, N.C.), 22 September 1863, page 2, column 1.  North Carolina Collection, Wilson Special Collections Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; call number C071 Z.

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