Today in History:

656 Series I Volume XXIII-I Serial 34 - Tullahoma Campaign Part I

Page 656 Chapter XXXV. KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA.

myself. Upon its arrival there, I took command in person of its cavalry consisting of the Fifth, Lieutenant-Colonel Butler; the Fourteenth Illinois, Colonel Capron, and the Eleventh Kentucky, Major-, including two (attached) 3-inch Ridman guns and four mountain howitzers, in all, 1,200 men, and marched for Greensburg.

Unprecedendetly high water at Green River compelled me to ferry my whole force at Vaughn's Ferry on that stream, involving a detention of thirty-six hours. Deeming it useless after crossing to attempt to join the pursing force, I direction my march upon the left flank of the enemy, for the purpose of intercepting him upon his attempt to return after crossing the Louisville and Nashville Railroad. I therefore moved to Elizabethtown, and thence to Litchfield, a position from which it was in my power to anticipate the enemy at any possible point upon Green River he might attempt to cross at, and force him to fight. To my surprise, I there learned that he crossed the Ohio; Forced to do so, as I have since learned from prisoners of high rank, by the interposition of my force between him and Green River. I left at once for Elizabeth-town, and thence by rail to Louisville as rapidly as railroad facilities would permit. From Louisville I moved by steamboat, by order of Major-General Burnside, to Cincinnati, where I was supplied with fresh horses, involving an unavoidable delay of over a day. I left Cincinnati on the afternoon of the 15th instant,leaving behind the Eleventh Kentucky, yet unsupplied with horses, with orders to follow on as rapidly as possible. This force, excepting one company, never reached me, and was subsequently detached from my command. I reached Portsmouth, ion the Ohio River, on the afternoon of the 16th instant, disembarked, procured supplies for men and horses, and transportation, and at 9 p. m. I marched for Fair Oaks and Portland, 30 miles distant. At the latter point I was positively informed that the enemy was advancing upon Centreville. I rested a couple of hours and pushed on to that point, where I took an admirable position for defense and sent out reconnoitering parties, who reported to me a retrograde movement of the enemy in the direction of Keystone Furcane. Early on the ensuing morning I continued my march toward Pomeroy, on the enemy's right flank, and between him and the river, with the intention of consummating on the banks of the Ohio what his sudden change of direction prevented me from doing on those of Green River. I remainded at Pomeroy long enough to feed my animals and men, and ascertain definitely that the enemy was making

(via Chester) for Buffington Bar, on the Ohio River. I then regarded his defeat as so certain that I announced top General Burnside its probability on the ensuing morning, and at 10 p. m. resumed my march for Buffington Bar, via Racine. I adopted this route against the advice of citizens whom I was compelled to consult for information. It was the only practicable one the enemy could have retreated upon from an attack by General Hobson's forces in his rear.

Before leaving Pomeroy, I dispatched a courier to general Hobson, apprising him of my direction, and requesting him to press the enemy's rear with all the forces he could bring up. Traveling all night, I reached the last descent to the river bottom at Buffington Bar at 5.30 a. m. on the 19th. Here, halting my force and placing my artillery in a commanding position, I determined to make a reconnaissance in person, for the purpose of ascertaining if a report just made to me-that the gunboats had left on a provision evening, the Home Guards had retreated and that the enemy had been crossing all night-was true. A very dense fog enveloped everything confining the view of surrounding objects to a radius of about 50 yards. I was accompanied by a small advance

Page 656 Chapter XXXV. KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA.