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7 Series I Volume XXXII-I Serial 57 - Forrest's Expedition Part I

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Page 7 Chapter XLIV. GENERAL REPORTS.

and infantry were sent out from time to time to watch the movements of the enemy, but failed to find him in any considerable force in our immediate front.

Information gained through scouts and deserters placed Johnston's army at Dalton and vicinity, occupying the same position he had taken up after the rebel army had fallen back from Mission Ridge, November 26, 1863, and showing no disposition as yet to assume the offensive. Desertions from the enemy still continued numerous, averaging 30 per day, nearly all of whom wished to embrace the terms of the President's amnesty proclamation, which, with Major-General Grant's General Orders, Numbers 10, of [December 12, 1863,] headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, had been freely circulated within the rebel lines for some time previous.

On the 20th of January General G. M. Dodge, at Pulaski, Tenn., having ascertained that a force of rebel cavalry, under Roddey, was constructing flat-boats, and hiding them in Little Bear Creek, Spring Creek, and Town Creek, and also that one of Roddey's regiments was foraging on the north side of the Tennessee River, he immediately informed General Grant of these movements of the enemy, who directed me to organize an expedition at once of sufficient force to drive Roddey away from where he was reported to be, and to destroy all boats and material that might in any way be used by the enemy in crossing the Tennessee River. On the 22nd information was received that Johnson's and Morrison's brigades of Roddey's command had crossed the Tennessee somewhere between Florence and Clifton, on the 18th, intending to make a raid on our railroads. The guards along the railroads were cautioned against an attack from this party, and measures were immediately taken to drive Roddey across the river. Colonel A. O. Miller, Seventy-second Indiana, commanding one expedition, reports from Blue Water (26th), via Pulaski (27th), that he engaged Johnson's brigade near Florence, routed them, killed 15, and wounded quite a number, taking them prisoners; among them 3 commissioned officers. Our loss, 10 wounded.

Brigadier-General Gillem also reports having sent out parties from along the line of the Northwestern Railroad, and their having returned with Lieutenant-Colonel Brewer, 2 captains, 3 lieutenants, and 20 men as prisoners.

A party of guerrillas, numbering about 150 men, attacked Tracy City on the 20th, and, after having three times summoned the garrison to surrender, were handsomely repulsed by our forces.

Colonel T. J. Harrison, Thirty-ninth Indiana (mounted infantry), reports from Cedar Grove, 21st instant,* that he had sent an expedition of 200 men to Sparta, to look after the guerrillas in that vicinity. They divided into five parties, concentrating at Sparta. Having passed over the localities of Carter's, Champ Ferguson's, Bledsoe's, and Murray's guerrillas, his (Harrison's) force remained on the Calfkilled five days, and during that time killed 4, wounded 5 or 6, and captured 15, including a captain and lieutenant, 30 horses, and 20 stand of arms.

The Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad having been completed on the 14th instant, and trains running regularly from Nashville to this point, steps were immediately taken to commence repairing the East Tennessee and Georgia Railroad. The First Division of the Fourth Corps, Major General D. S. Stanley commanding, was ordered on the 24th to take up a position north of Chattanooga, be-

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*Probably an error in date. See Harrison's report of January 14, p. 65.

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Page 7 Chapter XLIV. GENERAL REPORTS.

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