provisions; then returned by way of Bay Springs, disabling the cotton factory at that place in such a way as to require a communication between this country and New England in order to effect repairs.
On my way to Bay Mills I learned from a reliable source that the mills called Crippled Deer Mills, 6 miles south of this point, was supplying the rebels with a quantity of corn meal each week. I concluded the easiest and surest way to prevent these supplies going into the hands of the enemy was to disable the mill by breaking the machinery, which was accordingly done.
On leaving the Springs, on my return to camp, I looked around for transportation to carry off all contraband cotton in the neighborhood of the factory, but was unable to find a single team in that whole country. Having but few wagons myself I was unable to bring with me but 5 bales of cotton, all of which I have turned over to Captain Garrett, division quartermaster, leaving behind nearly 200 bales of contraband cotton belonging to the owner of the factory.
We captured 7 horses, with several sets of equipments, 10 stand of arms, and a variety of ammunition. The supposed force of the enemy was about 500, consisting in part of the Forrest cavalry, the balance irregular, some of all arms.
My officers and men behaved admirably. Without murmur they stood the fatigues of the march throughout, but were intensely disgusted when they found the enemy were retreating.
I desire to call your attention to the fact that our commissary of subsistence did not do his duty in the issue of rations for that expedition. Out of three days' bread issued a portion of the command could not find one day's good rations, the balance being totally rotten and unfit for use. Consequently I adopted the vigorous prosecution of the war policy, trying to live off the country. My soldiers say it was a pretty hard live in this God-forsaken country.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ROBT. B. MITCHELL,
Brigadier General JEFFERSON C. DAVIS,
Commanding Fourth Division.
AUGUST 7, 1862.-Skirmish at Wood Springs, near Dyersburg, Tenn.
Reports of Brigadier General Grenville M. Dodge, U. S. Army.
HDQRS. CENTRAL DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Trenton, Tenn., August 8, 1862.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report:
Yesterday, August 7, between 2 and 3 o'clock p.m., Captain Peck and 50 men attacked Faulkner's company of Jackson's cavalry 5 miles east of Dyersburg, in the river bottom, and completely surprised them. They report that they killed some 25 to 30, took 53 horses, a large number of guns, arms, &c. The dispatches taken show that this company crossed the Tennessee line five days ago, with orders to get into Kentucky to recruit and to burn all cotton they could find. At the time they left, Colonel Jackson was in Senatobia, Miss. Most of Faulkner's men who escaped left without their clothes, arms, or horses. They