Wheeler had with him part of Martin's division-five regiments, First Alabama, Third Alabama, fifty-first Alabama, First Confederate, and Fourth Alabama-about 2,000 men, imperfectly armed, but well mounted. Alpine is about 25 miles from here. Wheeler's headquarters have been at Gadsden ever since the fight at Shelbyville. He broke up his camp there on Sunday. He has all his transportation with him. The pickets Davis captured were detachments sent out as scouts from the main body. Wharton's division supposed to be in the vicinity of Rome. Wheeler has not been at Lebanon or Rawlingsville at all. No infantry in the vicinity of Gadsden.
[ROBT. B. MITCHELL,
HEADQUARTERS TWENTIETH CORPS,
Top Lookout Mountain, [September 3, 1863]- 5 p.m.
I send you the inclosed letter* from General Garfield. I now have but one route to pursue, and that is by Winston's and Stevens' Gaps. When I decided to march by Dougherty's Gap, I supposed we had possession of McLemore's Cove. I am not certain of it now, and as you are ordered to seize Dougherty's Gap, that is not my route. Dougherty's Gap is 10 miles from the top here, and about 4 miles or 3 from the top at Neal's Gap. I will encamp at Little River- first water-to-night, and start at 3 a.m, ordering all my train to descend the mountain after me, and move up to Stevens' Gap. I hope you are better. Have you any news?
A. McD. McCOOK.
HEADQUARTERS FIRST CAVALRY DIVISION,
[September 3, 1863.]
Major W. H. SINCLAIR:
I have been on top of the mountain near here and can see a very dense dust along the road, apparently about 8 or 9 miles across the mountain. The man at the house here says that it is on the Chattanooga and Rome road, the other side of Summersville. I watched it for two hours, and the dust was continuous; it is either a heavy column or a train.
These prisoners will tell you about the position of these troops. There is another road from Chattanooga 4 miles the other side of Chaney's, where one of them says Wheeler is. They may pass that road. I think there is nothing within 8 or 10 miles. Wheeler did not "feel;" he was not there. Forrest, the prisoners say, is 12 miles from here at the Narrows.
E. M. McCOOK,
*See Garfield to Thomas, September 3, p. 322.