War of the Rebellion: Serial 052 Page 0254 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLII.

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At Caperton's House, August 31, 1863.

Colonel POST,

Commanding First Brigade:

COLONEL: Orders have been received from corps headquarters to move the First and Second brigades and trains of the division to a position near Colonel Heg's brigade up on the mountain. General Davis directs that you have your command in readiness to follow the Second Brigade, which moves at 7 o'clock this morning. Orders will be sent when practicable for you to commence the ascent of the mountain. General Johnson has orders to occupy the grounds on which your brigade and the Second are now encamped.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.


August 31, 1863-10.30 a.m.


Assistant Adjutant-General:

Outpost Trenton road 7 miles out. All right in front. I have reconnoitered from 6 to 8 miles from here on my right, left, and front. Find no enemy except stragglers. There is said to be a saltpeter works 8 miles from here, worked until a few days. I sent 30 cavalry, under Colonel Abernathy, with a good topographical engineer, toward Trenton at sunrise. They will go to Trenton if they find it safe. I will have full report of country and roads when they return.


Colonel, Commanding Brigade.


Sand Mountain, August 31, 1863.

Captain HAUFF,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-General:

CAPTAIN: Pursuant to orders form Colonel Heg, I this morning proceeded in the direction of Trenton in charge of 30 men from the First Tennessee Cavalry. The object of the expedition was to examine the various roads across the mountain and ascertain what force of the enemy, if any, were stationed in Trenton. Nothing of interest transpired until the command arrived within 5 miles of Trenton. At that point, however, the advance was fired upon by the pickets of the enemy. I moved forward at once, driving their outposts in, and pressing them down the mountain and through the valley toward Trenton.

I found the roads strewn with arms and clothing, thrown away by the enemy in their flight. When within 500 yards of the town we were fired upon by a body of men, 60 in number, strongly posted behind fences and in the buildings of the town. Finding the enemy too strong to be dislodged with the small force I had, and perceiving