War of the Rebellion: Serial 010 Page 0071 Chapter XXII. CUMBERLAND GAP CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

of some $ 800 in value. We also captured several rebel flags, drums, swords, &c., and in the evening, on our return to the valley, I received a dispatch informing me that the order to march to Williamsburg was countermanded, and that I was ordered to join General Morgan at Speedwell at the earliest practicable moment, in order that our forces on this side might be concentrated for the purpose of attacking Cumberland Gap. It then being dark, or about it, I threw out picket-guards and remained at the Gap during that night.

On the following morning, having been joined by the Twenty-fourth Brigade, commanded by General Carter, in obedience to said order, at 4 o'clock I took up the line of march, and on same evening arrived at Rogers' Gap. No particular incident worthy of note occurred during the march. As we passed along we were frequently greeted by groups of citizens along the road, both ladies and gentleman, who had heretofore acted with the secession party, who expressed their great joy and satisfaction on the arrival of our army, and who stated that they had been deceived, but that they were glad our army had come to relieve them from the oppression and thraldom which had borne them down, and invited the officers to visit their houses and families and partake of such refreshments as they had, which, judging from all that I could see, was generously given and thankfully received. On the way, however, having learned from reliable sources that two citizens-William D. Sharp and James Cooper-were uncompromising secessionists, and had been and were the endeavoring to excite the people to rebellion, I had them arrested and carried them to Rogers' Gap, where on the next morning I transferred them, together with the prisoners and property taken at Big Creek Gap, over to General Morgan's disposal on the 15th, where, after resting one day, having received orders from General Morgan, I, with my command, together with commands of Generals De Courcy, Baird, and Carter,took up the line of march at 1 o'clock for the purpose of attacking the enemy, who was then said to be encamped in force at or near one Thomas'. The place assigned me in the order of march was forty-five minutes in rear of General Carter's brigade, which marched up what is called the New Valley road. But before arriving at said place it was ascertained that the enemy had abandoned it under great confusion, and made their way, some said, toward Cumberland Gap, some toward Knoxville, and others toward Morristown.

After resting a while at said place we were ordered to take up the line of march toward Cumberland Gap, in order to attack the enemy there, but before arriving at that point it was ascertained that the enemy had abandoned it and fled toward the railroad in utter confusion, after having first burned and destroyed all their commissary and provision stores, tents, camp equipage, &c. They left some artillery and other small-arms. General De Courcy having first arrived with his brigade on that evening, after having marched some twenty miles, proceeded to the top of the mountain, raised the glorious old flag of our country, and fired a salute from Captain Foster's battery in honor of the brilliant success achieved by the valor, energy, and patriotism of our officers and soldiers.

It would be unjust to close this report without according to Adjt. D. A. Carpenter, of Second Regiment Tennessee Volunteers, James Edwards, and William Cook, who volunteered their services, great praise for the gallant and efficient services rendered me in all my movements and marches. Their valor, patriotism, and untiring zeal and energy are worthy of note and thanks. The officers and men and