manded by the high ground on which I had commenced the construction of Fort Heiman, I deemed it proper to trust to the fact that the extremely bad roads leading to that point would prevent the movement of heavy guns by the enemy, by which I might be annoyed, and, leaving the Alabama Battalion of Cavalry and Captain Padgett's spy company on the western bank of the river, transferred the force encamped on that side to the opposite bank. At the time of receiving the first intimation of the approach of the enemy, the Forty-eighth and Fifty-first Tennessee Regiments having only just reported, were encamped at Danville and at the mouth of Sandy, and had to be moved from 5 to 20 miles in order to reach Fort Henry. this movement, together with the transfer of the Twenty-seventh Alabama and Fifteenth Arkansas Regiments from Fort Heiman across the river, was all perfected by 5 a.m. on the morning of the 5th.
Early on the morning of the 5th the enemy were plainly to be seen at Bailey's Ferry, 3 miles below. The large number of heavy transports reported by our scouts gave evidence of the fact that the enemy was there in force even at that time, and the arrival every hour of additional boats showed conclusively that I should be engaged with a heavy force by land, while the presence of seven gunboats, mounting fifty-four guns, indicated plainly that a joint attack was contemplated by land and water.
On leaving Fort Donelson I ordered Colonel Head to hold his own and Colonel Sugg's regiments, Tennessee volunteers, with two pieces of artillery, ready to move at a moment's warning, with three days' cooked rations, and without camp equipage or wagon train of any kind, except enough to carry the surplus ammunition.
On the morning of the 5h I ordered him, in case nothing more had been heard from the country below, on the Cumberland, at the time of the arrival of my messenger, indicating an intention on the part of the enemy to invest Fort Donelson, to move out with the two regiments and the two pieces of artillery and take position at the Furnace, half way on the Dover road to Fort Henry; the force embraced in this order was about 750 men, to act as circumstances might dictate.
Thus matters stood at 9 a.m. on the morning of the 5th. The wretched military position of Fort Henry and the small force at my disposal did not permit me to avail myself of the advantages to be derived from the system of outwork built with the hope of being re--enforced in time, and compelled me to determine to concentrate my efforts by land within the rifle pits surrounding the camp of the Tenth Tennessee and Fourth Mississippi Regiments in case I deemed it possible to do more than operate solely against the attack by the river. Accordingly my entire command was paraded and placed in the rifle pits around the above camps, and minute instructions given, not only to brigades, but to regiments and companies, as to the exact ground each was to occupy. Seconded by the able assistance of Major Gilmer, of the Engineers, of whose valuable services I thus early take pleasure in speaking, and by Colonels Heiman and Drake, everything was arranged to make a formidable resistance against anything like fair odds.
It was known to me on the day before that the enemy had reconnoitered the roads leading to Fort Donelson from Bailey's Ferry by way of Iron Mountain Furnace, and at 10 a.m. on the 5th I sent forward from Fort Henry a strong reconnoitering party of cavalry. They had not advanced more than 1/2 miles in the direction of the enemy when they encountered their reconnoitering party. Our cavalry charged them in gallant style, upon which the enemy's cavalry fell back, with a loss