We are in great need of tools for working on stockades, but are getting on very well under the circumstances. The road is well guarded from Tullahoma to Stevenson. Captain Morton went on train to Elk River this morning.
Captain Bankhead left for Huntsville to-day and can report to you in full as to stockades, &c.
H. M. BUCKLEY,
HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES FORCES,
Battle Creek, Ala., July 15, 1862.
Colonel J. B. FRY, Chief of Staff:
COLONEL: I reached here yesterday. Command in good order except in shoes and clothes. I have no fears of an attack - would prefer it. I have started 2 men this morning in search of information about the movements of the rebels at Chattanooga and will send the earliest news at all reliable by telegraph. The rebels are in sight of me across the river. Rifle pits have been made in the bank of the river on both sides. Our pickets, however, are not firing upon each other by an agreement made, as I am informed by General Hascall, before he came here. The agreement, I am told, excluded officers, who may be shot at. There has been no firing at officers or men. The cars are running frequently to and from Chattanooga. From what I hear I can stop this by going up the river some 5 miles with a battery and knocking down some trestle work just on the bank of the river. My information is not yet sufficiently reliable for action. I wish I was more fully apprised of the general's intentions. I might build some boats on Battle Creek and cross over and whip away the rebels over there. The impression here is that there are only four regiments there. The cars are running too frequently only to be bringing provisions, but whether they are bringing troops or taking them away I have not yet been able to learn.
The general's orders to take a strong position, be very vigilant, &c., rather preclude the idea of any activity on my part. I do not think there is any probability of my being attacked, and I think it possible - just possible - to meet the force that went to Murfreesborough should they return this way. I hear this morning that the rebels have deserted Knoxville and taken everything to Dalton. This information was given by a boy who has been in the Confederate army, but was sent home ears being too young. I am told he is a bad boy and a great rebel. Take it for what you think it worth. It was reported to me by a good Union man.
General Hascall has just left me, and is anxious to knox down the bridge and trestle work, but says it is 10 miles up the river. I think it can be done. I am afraid I shall have to send back as far as Bellefonte for forage.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant.
T. L. CRITTENDEN,
HEADQUARTERS FIFTH DIVISION, July 15, 1862.
GENERAL: Your dispatch respecting the crossing of troops at and above Chattanooga is this moment received, 12.45 o'clock. I shall use