MUNFORDVILLE, HART COUNTY, KY.,
January 5, 1863.
CAPTAIN: At a late hour during the night of the 25th of December while encamped at Gallatin, Tenn., I received through the division commander an order from the General commanding the department to proceed with my brigade, by rail, to Bowling Green and Cave City, and drive from the line of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad the rebel cavalry of Morgan, then north of the Cumberland River, and meditating, as was supposed, the destruction of that railroad. At that time Morgan was supposed to be south of Green River, and at some point in the vicinity of Cave City or Glasgow. The cars to convey my troops were to come from Nashville, and on the morning of the 26th instant (and without unnecessary delay after the arrival of the transportation), I left Gallatin with my command, five regiments of infantry, and Southwick's battery of artillery. Simultaneously with this movement the Twelfth Division, under that accomplished and able officer, Brigadier General J. J. Reynolds, marched toward Scottsville and Glasgow, with a view to intercept Morgan, in the event that he was driven back in the direction of either of those points. Three trains of cars, each drawn by one engine, was the amount of transportation furnished me by the railroad authorities at Nashville. The cars were barely sufficient to contain the men, horses, and guns of the brigade, and subsequent developments proved either that the engines furnished were very defective or that enough engines were not furnished, for when the rear train, containing the Fourth Kentucky Infantry (Colonel Croxton), three companies of the Seventy-fourth Indiana, the battery horses, and a part of the battery, reached South Tunnel, 6 miles north of Gallatin, the engine attached thereto became entirely useless, and the train was delayed until another engine could be sent from Nashville. While the rear train was halted at South Tunnel, waiting for another engine, the passenger train from Nashville (Conductor Taylor), arrived, but the conductor refused to permit his engine to be used to forward any rear train, notwithstanding Colonel Croxton advised him of the great importance of the expedition upon which the brigade was sent, and the imminent danger which might result to the entire road from any delay.
This I learn from Colonel Croxton. I have no personal knowledge of these facts, since I was in the advance train, some distance, ahead of the rear train. Whether the conductor is to be blamed for refusing to permit his engine to be detached for the purpose indicated, I do not pretend to say; that is for others to judge; my duty is simply to state the facts.
It may be proper also to state that the track of the railroad was, when I left Gallatin, in bad condition, from recent rain, though that difficulty might have been obviated had more engines been furnished.
This unfortunate detention delayed the rear train, so that it did not reach Bowling Green until 10 o'clock of the night of the 26th. For that detention I am not in any wise responsible, as those concerned received from me full information as to the number of men, horses, and guns for which transportation would be required.
After my arrival at Bowling Green, I learned that all of Morgan's force was most probably north of Munfordville, beyond the points to which I had been ordered, and it was evident that I must follow him beyond that place, in order to save any part of the railroad from destruction.
It was not certainly known upon my arrival at Bowling Green whether the track was clear to Munfordville; but as soon as it was ascertained