War of the Rebellion: Serial 023 Page 0234 KY., M. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXVIII.

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Major-General BUELL:

You ask what prevented my marching yesterday. The cavalry has not yet come. To march to McMinnville by way of Woodbury and leave the road by way of Liberty open or vice versa is to give over our communications to the enemy. To chase Morgan and Forrest, they mounted on race horses, with infantry this hot weather is a hopeless task. I have only four days' provisions and am waiting for rations from Nashville. I have arranged to carry ten days'. The Thirty-first Indiana I have been compelled to send to Gallatin to protect that place. With the cavalry I could have interposed between the positions of the enemy and with my infantry killed and destroyed the party. Not a particle of the baggage of the troops or equipage of my headquarters or papers have come forward yet. Neither troops nor officers have had a change of clothing or the shelter of a tent since we left Athens. I am powerless to have them brought up. If you think under the circumstances I should move on McMinnville at once give the order and I will march in five minutes after I receive it.




Huntsville, July 30, 1862.

General NELSON, Murfreesborough:

Have your baggage brought forward without delay. I presumed of course you had it with you. It appears you are in no condition to march, but I hope that it will not continue. I did not so understand when you reported you would march on the 28th. Have you communicated with General Johnson? What information have you in regard to the enemy at Lebanon? We cannot spare whole regiments to guard so many isolated points. There is already a regiment at Gallatin, and if that has fortified itself as it should have done it is sufficient and more than sufficient.


Where is your baggage and who has charge of it?

BATTLE CREEK, July 30, 1862.

Major-General BUELL:

The enemy has broken up their camp opposite here. Yesterday there were three trains at one time loaded with soldiers at Shell Mound and moved toward Chattanooga. No troops had crossed on 29th at Chattanooga. I have men watching their movements. I expect to hear from them this morning. One of my scouts met 5 rebel soldiers, telling him that the Union troops had a fight at Kingston and were victorious; rebels flying in every direction. This would have been sent yesterday morning, but the lines would not work at that time, and being misty on the mountains. As soon as it clears away so I can see any distance I will make a reconnaissance up the river. All well.