It is deeply regretted by all the officers and soldiers under my command that it was not their privilege to participate in the brilliant achievement of the 19th instant. We could wish no higher honor for this regiment than to have contributed something to win that most important victory. All honor to the brave men of Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota, and Ohio, who on that memorable occasion drove back in dismay three times their number of the vandal horde of secession and treason.
Information came to me Sunday morning of the battle at Logan's. Although the men of my regiment were entirely destitute of provisions, and on that morning had not received half enough for breakfast, my summons to them to fall into line and march to the aid of our brethren was obeyed with commendable alacrity. Starting for the scene of danger, we marched as rapidly as it was possible for men to do. Upon reaching Logan's I found that the enemy had fled and that our troops had followed in pursuit. Without halting at Logan's we camp up with this and the other brigade under General Thomas a short while before dark on Sunday. After our arrival, in obedience to orders received from you and approved by the division commander. I took possession of the woods immediately in front of the rebel fortifications, with directions to hold it against any attack of the enemy. There my men lay on the ground during the whole of Sunday night without fire, tents, overcoats, or blankets, and with nothing to eat except about one-fourth of a cracker to each man. A picket guard was stationed in advance, under charge of Captain G. W. Riley, of Company D.
At daylight Monday morning I formed my regiment into line, and with the approval of both yourself and the division commander started towards the rebel fortifications, sending forward in advance of the main body of the regiment a squad of men under Captain Hill, Company F, who first entered the rebel works. I also sent forward in advance Company A, Captain Davidson, as skirmishers. When we reached the enemy's works it was ascertained that they had, under cover of the previous night, crossed the Cumberland, and abandoned, as it is believed, all of their wagons, mules, horses, ammunition, and artillery. The rear of the fugitive army could not have crossed long before daylight, since when my advance, Company A, reached the crossing at the river some of the rebels were observed on the opposite side on a high hill, from which they fired upon our troops. The fire was returned, and it is believed that a member of Company A killed one of the rebels across the river. Further pursuit was impossible, since the rebels in their retreat had utterly destroyed or removed all means of crossing the river.
Various documents and papers were found by officers and soldiers within the rebel fortifications. Some of them may be of importance to to Government or throw some light upon the plans of the rebels, and they are therefore transmitted with this report.* Among other documents, I transmit a letter written from this place on the 19th instant by the son of Brigadier-General Carroll, of the rebel Army, in which he states that the entire force which the enemy there had on both sides of the Cumberland River was 13,000. Also a general order, issued on January 3, showing that Major General George B. Crittenden assumed command here on that day. Also a general order from General Zollicoffer, of January 12, which shows the amount of the rebel force then on this side of the Cumberland under his immediate command. Also the general-order book of Zollicoffer's brigade. The remaining books and papers will not be here described.