know whether I should march to Brigadier-General Carter's assistance, and received answer to immediately do so.
On Friday, May 1, at 1 o'clock, with my whole command, I gave orders at once to cross. The Cumberland had now become unfordable, and I had to swim the horses that were on the north side, including the crossing of artillery and infantry.
By 12 p. m. I had crossed my whole force. Leaving camp at an early hour, I arrived by 2 o'clock with my command at Monticello. Brigadier-General Carter had arrived the evening before, after first defeating the enemy. Though too late to aid in the fight, I learned from Colonel Wolford that we had completely deceived the enemy, making them believe that the real force was with us and the feint from them, thus giving ample time to cross, while the enemy was distracted with our demonstration.
On Monday, May 4, all the cavalry at Monticello under command of Colonel Wolford pursued the enemy. Finding that he had crossed the mountains, we returned.
On the next day I was ordered to return by the way of Jamestown.
On Wednesday, May 6, I commenced recrossing the Cumberland, which was now very high from heavy rains. With only one small, halfrotten boat, that would transport only five horses at a time, I found it tedious to cross.
I was all Thursday and Friday swimming horses, crossing wagons, & c.
On Saturday morning crossed artillery. Hearing of a desperate band of guerrillas, and finding a guide who knew of their whereabouts, some 8 miles from the river, and having the infantry (unemployed) to cover the crossing of the cavalry, artillery, & c., I determined to send a strong party of 100 men against them, believing I would do a good service by breaking up the band. I sent the party under command of Captain Wiltsie, of the Twentieth Michigan Infantry, assisted by Captain Wilson, with his company (M), Twelfth Kentucky Cavalry, and Captain Searcy and his company (L), Ninth Kentucky Cavalry; in all, amounting to 104 men. They arrived at their destination Saturday morning and seized some 12 desperate men.
About 2 p. m. they were charged by a body of cavalry numbering some 250 or 300 men, which proved to be Major-General Morgan's advance guard. Our men fell back in two parties, one down the big road, toward the Narrows, and the other, under Captain Wiltsie, and 49 men, toward the river. The first party got to the Narrows about sunset, after some fighting, losing 1 officer wounded and taken prisoner and 2 men killed.
Captain Wiltsie's party were repeatedly charged, and never fell back in front until about to be surrounded, when they would fall back and take a new position. Three times they charged the enemy and drove them. Captain [Joseph] Chenault, 2 lieutenants, 4 sergeants, and not less than 25 or 30 men of the enemy were killed and wounded. I heard of this about 5 p. m., and immediately crossed the river with most of the Twentieth Michigan Infantry, and sent word to Lieutenant-Colonel Boyle, commanding the Ninth Kentucky Cavalry, and Lieutenant-Colonel Holeman, commanding the Twelfth Kentucky Cavalry, to come over at once with two battalions, leaving the rest to guard the horses each of their respective commands. Lieutenant-Colonel Holeman joined me with two battalions; Lieutenant-Colonel Boyle thought best (which I sanctioned), as he heard that the enemy was crossing at Rowena, not to come over. I ordered him to send scouts to obtain information from the different crossing places and keep a vigilant lookout.