CAMP HAMILTON, December 14, 1862
Lieutenant Colonel J. P. GARESCHE,
Chief of Staff.:
SIR: A lieutenants, with 3 wagons from the Chicago battery, passed beyond our lines about 1 mile for forage,and was attacked by a small force of rebel cavalry. A portion of my command was returning with a forage train, and was half a mile distant, when they heard the firing. Several of the companies speedily returned, and drove the rebels off, who succeeded in taking with them 5 men of the battery and 6 horses. The lieutenant and wagons have been returned safely. I would respectfully ask authority to stop all forage trains which are not accompanied with a suitable guard. Our telegraph line has suddenly got out of order.
JAS. S. NEGLEY,
CAMP HAMILTON, December 14, 1862-7.30 p.m.
Col. J. P. GARESCHE:
Stokes' battery lost 5 prisoners and 1 severely wounded. The party appear to have behaved well. Have directed Lieutenant Stevens to make full report, for you consideration. Have in arrest a citizen accused of giving signals to rebels; will try him to-morrow. It is very currently reported and believed that Holmes' rebel force from Arkansas have successfully crossed the river, and are now marching in this direction from Tennessee River. Forrest still reported at Columbia. There was a considerable movement of cavalry crossing Franklin pike yesterday from the west, in the direction of Triune. Some of them encamped on Wilson pike last night. There are many reports of considerable addition to rebel force, and a projected movement against your center or left wing. You may have correct information on this point. My picket line is fully established, connecting with lines of Generals Davis and Rousseau.
Have stockades and block-houses. Need cavalry vedettes.
JAS. S. NEGLEY,
GALLATIN, December 14, 1862
Two negroes arrived at Bledsoe's Creek, where our advance brigades are now posted. They left Hartsville since dark, and report that 300 or Morgan's cavalry, under a major, crossed there to-day, and also that Kirby Smith and Bennett are south of the river, and will cross to-night; the latter we doubt. Do you know anything of Smith's whereabouts? We are on the alert, and Wolford is preparing to go out and ascertain the facts, with orders to send word every hour if an enemy is found.
GEO. H. THOMAS,
Per J. J. REYNOLDS,
HEADQUARTERS FOURTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Nashville, December 14, 1862
Rebels occupy defensive attitude. If any are crossing at Carthage or Hartsville it is only John [H.] Morgan, not Kirby Smith; he is, there-