in the morning. It gives me 2,000 more good men, and as all is concentrated at Murfreesborough and Triune, not in our line of communication, I deem it useless there. All quiet in my front. I will attend to my right. I have Colonel Zahm and three regiments of cavalry on that road, and one-half of his men in the saddle patrolling. I will have timely warning. I have cavalry in search of Negley, but have failed to find him as yet. Zahm drove the rebels in within sight of Murfreesborough, when he was shelled from other side of Stone's River. How will I communicate with you now, as the courier line is withdrawn? Stanley will attend to the roads south. Your idea about the line is right. My right is retired, and, I think, safe. The cars are very busy, running in and out of Murfreesborough, to what effect none but a rebel knows. My headquarters are exactly on the cross-roads. I have no baggage, and am staying with Johnson, and I hope to see you to-night or early in the morning.
A. McD. McCOOK,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Camp near La Vergne, December 29, 1862-1 a.m.
Commanding Center, Stewartsborough:
GENERAL: General Crittenden reports that the regiment of cavalry sent down to Lizzard's had just returned, having encountered the enemy in such force at the ford, 2 miles in advance of our outposts, as to think it imprudent to go on. Their fires extended considerably to the right of our position, and they had been on this side of the creek during the day. Under these circumstances the general wishes you to throw out at once a strong picket of cavalry, supported by at least a regiment of infantry, along that road on this side of the creek, directing them to keep a sharp lookout and themselves concealed. In the morning he wants a strong infantry and cavalry reconnaissance pushed forward in that direction.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. P. GARESCHE,
Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff.
HEADQUARTERS, December 29, 1862-7.50 a.m.
The general commanding desires an immediate report from you of the state of things along your lines, and those of the enemy in front of you.
By command of Major-General W. S. Rosecrans:
J. P. GARESCHE,
Chief of Staff.
HEADQUARTERS CENTER, December 29, 1862.
Negley is moving up, and General Rosecrans desires you to move on. Your teams have been ordered to follow.
GEO. H. THOMAS,