The expedition consisted of the Third Regiment New York Cavalry, and a squadron of the Twelfth, and of Mix's new cavalry, and one company North Carolina cavalry, and was under the command of Brigadier General Edward E. Potter, chief of staff.
The bridge over the Tar River, at Rocky Mount, a station on the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad, between Goldsborough and Weldon, was completely destroyed. The bridge was 350 feet long, and trestle-work of 400 feet more. A cotton-mill, filled; a flouring mill, containing 1, 000 barrels of flour and large quantities of hard bread; machine-shop, containing shells, gunpowder, and every munitions of war; a large depot, offices, &c. ; an engine and a train of cars, a wagon train of 25 wagons, filled with stores and munitions; an armory and machine-shop, with the machinery and materials, and 800 bales of cotton, were all destroyed.
At Tarborough two steamboats and one barge, and a fine iron-clad, in process of construction, a saw-mill, a train of cars, 100 bales of cotton, and large qualities of subsistence and ordnance stores were destroyed. The bridge over the Tar River at this point was also destroyed; likewise the bridges at Greenville and Sparta were destroyed.
About 100 prisoners were taken, and some 300 animals-horses and mules. Some 300 contrabands follow the expedition into New Berne.
The force had constant fighting with the enemy, who made great endeavor to intercept their return, but in every case the enemy's position was either turned or they were compelled to retire. Our loss in killed, wounded, and missing will not exceed 25 men.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. G. FOSTER,
Commanding. Major General H. W. HALLECK,
General-in-Chief, U. S. Army.
Numbers 2. Report of Brigadier Gem. Edward E. Potter, U. S. Army, commanding expedition.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA, July 29, 1863.
COLONEL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of the forces recently under my command; Colonel Jourdan, with his brigade (Twenty-fifth and Twenty-seventh Massachusetts and One hundred and fifty-eighth New York), crossed the Neuse to Fort Anderson, on the afternoon of July 17, with orders to proceed to Swift Creek. On the following morning, I crossed with the cavalry, consisting of the Third New York, two companies Mix's new regiment, three companies Twelfth New York (Major Clarkson), one company of North Carolina cavalry, and two sections of mountain howitzers, the whole under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Lewis. The line of march was taken for Swift Creek, which point we reached at 6 p. m., overtaking Colonel Jourdan. The enemy's pickets