The crossing will be well covered. There is no doubt but I can hold the farther side and throw an entire brigade over. A citizen from Atlanta who arrived this evening reports that the rebels destroyed a bridge over Running Water Creek, and appeared from every indication to be about to evacuate Chattanooga.
J. M. BRANNAN,
HDQRS. THIRD DIVISION, FOURTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Battle Creek, Tenn., August 29, 1863.
Lieutenant Colonel GEORGE E. FLYNT,
Asst. Adjt. General and Chief of Staff, 14th Army Corps:
COLONEL: Two companies of the Third (Colonel Van Derveer's) Brigade were thrown across the river opposite the mouth of this creek at 3 p.m. this day, meeting with no resistance whatever. No pickets have been seen at that point since 9 a.m. this day. A few men went across about 11 a.m., but found no rebels. The country has been scouted within a circuit of 2 miles without discovering anything. Our troops on the farther side are intrenching themselves so as to be secure from attack. They can be re-enforced easily,as also well protected by our guns on this side of the river. Shall I allow them to remain in this position, and will I be permitted to send an entire regiment or brigade across? The pontoon-bridge can be laid very rapidly if sent here.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. M. BRANNAN,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.
The raft already constructed can easily transport a piece of artillery. The breadth of the river at this point is about 500 yards.
HEADQUARTERS FOURTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Bolivar Springs, August 29, 1863-8.45 p.m.
Dispatch received. The general commanding directs that you can cross your troops where you are, with all the rations you have on hand and your artillery. Take means to protect your rations from the weather, and then send back your supply trains to Stevenson to be filled up to their utmost capacity with rations, and to join you opposite Battle Creek, via Bridgeport.
The pontoon-bridge will be completed at that place by Monday night. Orders were sent you this morning to cross your troops.
Throw away everything surplus so as to carry as many rations as possible when we start from Battle Creek. Make arrangements to carry twenty-five days' rations if possible.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. E. FLYNT,
Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff.