prisoners were captured in another part of the town. This charge was so irresistible and daring, and was made so unexpectedly to the enemy, that they were unable to check it by the fire of their guns and musketry, and were also unable to save their guns by flight.
One gun, however, was hurried away, and taken as far as the bridge that crosses Duck River, on the south side of the town, on the road to Tullahoma, but its wheels broke through the bridge, and the enemy was compelled to abandon it. This served to partially blockade the bridge, thereby preventing the rapid retreat of a large body of rebel cavalry which was yet on the north side of the river, closely pursued by our forces. The retreat now became a perfect rout. Those who could not cross the bridge endeavored to swim the river, which was very much swollen by the late rains. But few reached the other side, while many were drowned. In the midst of their confusion the rebel General Wheeler called upon some of his troops to form and stop our advance. The First Confederate Cavalry volunteered for this duty, and, in endeavoring to perform it, saved their general (Wheeler), who escaped by swimming the river, while the whole regiment, save those of it who were killed, was captured by our forces, including the colonel, lieutenant-colonel, major, and all of the line officers present. It was now dark, and we had destroyed all of the rebel forces in the vicinity of Shelbyville north of Duck River. Our horses being perfectly exhausted and the men worn out, I ordered a halt until midnight for the purpose of resting them, then intending to pursue and overtake the enemy's train; but even by that time, so exhausting had been our march and chase of the day, we were not in a condition to proceed farther.
In the morning, as there was no possibility of overtaking the enemy, and as our men were out of rations, in accordance with the instructions of the commanding general, I send the cavalry, under the command of General Stanley, to Manchester, via Fairfield and Wartrace, while I returned with General Baird's division-which remained behind the day before to hold Guy's Gap-to my camp near Christiana.
Our loss in killed and wounded at Guy's Gap and Shelbyville will amount to about 50. This number can safety be set down as the maximum. We did not lose a man by capture.
The enemy lost in killed, wounded, and drowned in Duck River, at the least estimate, from 200 to 225. Our list of prisoners captured accounts for 509. Many of the enemy when captured were hurried off before their names could be obtained for the list from which this account is taken; so that, including them, the total number of prisoners captured by our forces can be placed at 700, including about 40 commissioned officers.
We also captured about 3,000 sacks of corn and corn meal, a few animals, and a quantity of meat, whisky, ammunition, and small-arms, that the enemy could not carry off in their precipitous flight.
I cannot praise too highly the bold dash and gallant conduct of our cavalry at Shelbyville. The efficiency of this branch of the service, not only in this, but in all of our late engagements with the enemy, has been established beyond a doubt. The enemy can no longer boast of the superiority of their cavalry and of its accomplishments.
We met with an enthusiastic reception from the loyal citizens of Shelbyville; our soldiers were received with tears of joy, and our flag, that had been secretly hid for months, floated from many houses.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant Colonel C. GODDARD,
Asst. Adjt. General, Headquarters Department of the Cumberland.