War of the Rebellion: Serial 030 Page 0244 KY.,MID. AND E.TENN.,N.ALA.,AND SW.VA. Chapter XXXII.

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and ready to move. I shall continue in this position until 10 o'clock, unless I receive other orders. I wish to be advised if, when I advance, the general desires that I should push for the bridge on Stewart's Creek, and, in the event of success, to cross that stream and pass on toward Murfreesborough, or,should the enemy burn the bridge, is it expected that I should cross with my command as best I can; also if it is still desired that I should push a brigade on the Jefferson pike, or, upon reaching Stewart's Creek, shall wait there for further orders, or shall I at once go to Stewart's Creek? My column is so remote from General McCook (I am told it is 11 miles) that I cannot inform myself so as to conform to his movements or know when it is the proper moment to strike. A small force of the enemy is reported in front, but I do not know certainly whether there is any or not. I have sent the cavalry forward to make a reconnaissance. Cannon firing is just reported to have been heard in the direction of Nolensville this morning. My quartermaster this moment reports having just discovered, not far from camp, 100 barrels of corn.

Respectfully,

T. L. CRITTENDEN,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,

Camp on Murfreesborough and Old Liberty Road,

December 27, 1862-9.40 a.m.

Major-General CRITTENDEN,

Camp on Murfreesborough [Pike], near La Vergne:

GENERAL: Your dispatch of 7.30 a.m. is received. The general plan in refusing your wing is to give the right wing time to get up; to give Negley time to get in the enemy's rear, if possible, and Rousseau to come up in support of you. Hence the delay enjoined on you. But you can go on driving them slowly before you until you reach Stewart's Creek. Throw a brigade across the stream, if possible, and hold the bridge. Push another brigade along the Jefferson pike, with proper supports, and try and seize the bridge on that road to cross Stewart's Creek. Take up a position there in order of battle along the front thus gained, and await the arrival of Negley and Rousseau. That junction effected, and provided things go well with McCook, we will advance on Murfreesborough; your command along the line of the Murfreesborough pike, and Thomas down the old State road, running almost parallel to it. The general may possibly ride up to the front, but the headquarters will remain at this point until further notification.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. P. GARESCHE,

Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,

Camp on the Murfreesborough Pike, December 27, 1862-3.05 p.m.

Major-General THOMAS L. CRITTENDEN,

Commanding Left Wing, Camp near La Vergne:

GENERAL: The general wishes you to open communication with Negley, and report his whereabouts. He hopes you will not omit, while pushing a brigade forward on the Jefferson pike, to hold the cross-roads at their point of intersection, with two brigades of the rear division.