War of the Rebellion: Serial 023 Page 0684 KY., M. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXVIII.

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best guns; if any must be abandoned they should be effectually made useless. Camp equipage must be destroyed. Barton will be ordered to cover your movement. Empty wagons have been ordered up and should reach you in two days. Your line of retreat will be upon Morristown, where transportation will be ordered for you at that point. The commanding general directs me further to say that he can give you no full and definite instructions for your government, but relies upon your good judgment and energy for the successful accomplishment of this movement. Your measures must necessarily be regulated by the operations of the enemy. Colonel Allston has been ordered to report to you. a copy of his instructions are herewith inclosed. If you ascertain that the enemy are withdrawing from your front with a view of falling back upon Lexington you will of course suspend your movement. if not pushed by the enemy you will, as soon as your command is in hand on the railroad, receive further instructions. Your line of retreat will be cleveland, and thence either to Dalton or Chattanooga, as circumstances may determine.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. F. BELTON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

BEAN'S STATION, TENN., June 15, 1862.

Colonel BENJAMIN ALLSTON, First Cavalry Brigade:

COLONEL: Your communication of yesterday was received last night. The commanding general directs me to say than the facility with which the enemy turn cumberland Gap and the obstructions placed on the road in frond renders that pass comparatively unimportant. With the small force under his command he must decide upon defending one or the other end of the department. General Stevenson has been instructed to evacuate Cumberland Gap. His line of retreat will be toward Morristown and Chattanooga. The success of this difficult operation will in a great measure depend upon your efforts. You will in a great measure depend upon your efforts. Your will cover Powell's Valley with your cavalry and check any advance toward Knoxville and the railroad. You will report to General Stevenson, who is charged with this operation and under whose orders you are placed. Chattanooga is attacked in force. With a portion of his command the general will proceed himself to that point. You will continue to send to Knoxville such information as it is important he should have. He will probably remain there until Tuesday (17th instant) morning. You will destroy this letter and make no mention of the contemplated movement.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. F. BELTON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

JUNE 15, 1862.

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va:

GENERAL: General Buell seems to be directing the movement against this department. Since the withdrawal of the army from Corinth they have been largely re-enforced, and the enemy in overwhelming numbers