a communication from Colonel Hoblitzell, whom I had dispatched from New Market for them, informing me that there was not a ration to be had. I at the same time received a communication from General Rosecrans, directing me to leave one-half of my command on Flint River, and station the remainder at Winchester. I accordingly directed General Crook, who had just come up with his command, to countermarch and to take post at or near Flint River, and put the First Division into camp about 4 miles from Winchester.
I came immediately to Decherd, and finding there was little probability of obtaining rations for my command, I went at once to Stevenson and attended personally to their being provided, and succeeded that night at midnight in starting to the First Division three days' rations.
The morning of the 16th, I had a train also started for General Crook's command on Flint River, but it was obliged to return on account of bridges having been destroyed on the Memphis and Charleston Railroad. When those troops will get rations depends entirely upon the amount of damage done the railroad, and the celerity with which the repairers work. I trust, however, it will be speedily done, for during the whole of this trip the command has drawn only four days' rations. I think the record of the cavalry service during the entire war cannot show a more severe campaign than the one my command has just closed. There was scarcely an hour during the whole pursuit that the horses were unsaddled; for days and nights together the men were in the saddle, almost constantly on the march, and some days making as high as 53 and 57 miles. Take again into consideration the fact that a greater part of the time the troops were out of rations, and our hasty movements giving them little or no time to forage on the country; that the nights were very cold and the men without overcoats, and I think the campaign challenges comparison with any service performed during the war. Yet, with all the severe duty and hardships necessarily devolving upon the men, they made not a murmur, but, one the contrary, seemed only anxious to do everything in their power to accomplish the object for which we had started, viz, to overtake and, if possible, destroy the enemy's cavalry, and whenever we did succeed in reaching them they proved that they were ready and competent to do this. I only regret that the precipitancy of their movements after the engagement at Farmington prevented us from again overtaking their main body, though on the last day of their flight General Crook captured their rear guard.
For further details concerning our movements I must refer you to the reports of the division commanders and their subordinates.
Your particular attention is called to the brilliant affair at Anderson's Cross-Roads on the day the trains of General Thomas' corps were burned, in which the First Wisconsin and Second Indiana Cavalry were engaged. Although the troops of Colonel McCook's division did not arrive in time to save the trains, the action of these two regimental commanders when they did arrive (Colonel La Grange, First Wisconsin, and Major Presdee, Second Indiana) is no less commendable. The gallantry and daring of Colonel La Grange was very conspicuous, and he handled his regiment with great skill.
I consider him one of the most promising young officers in the cavalry command.
The damage done the cavalry from the time of their crossing the