[Inclosure No. 2.]
HDQRS. SECOND DIV., 14TH ARMY CORPS, Fowler's Farm, Junction of the Roads leading to Cooper's and Steven's Gaps, 3 Miles to the first and 1 Mile to the latter, September 8, 1863-12 m.
Chief of Staff, Fourteenth Army Corps:
SIR: Ascertaining that the rebels were just commencing to obstruct Cooper's Gap, I pushed forward a brigade and occupied the gap at 8 a.m. The rebels fled after cutting down about a dozen trees. I ordered one regiment to be sent to the foot of the gap, to occupy and hold it. The road appears to be good at this point. I will report in the evening.
One regiment has been sent to seize and occupy Steven's Gap, which is reported heavily obstructed with fallen trees; these will be cut out to-night if possible. The road to Frick's Gap branches off the Cooper's Gap road about 1 mile northeast of this point; the road is pronounced impassable for wagons. There is a great scarcity of water here; men and animals will suffer if we remain here. The batteries and brigade teams are all up the mountain. I hope to get the supply train up by dark.
The only reliable news I have from the valley represents about 2,000 rebel cavalry on the road between Stevens' and La Fayette.
I have the honor to remain, yours, very respectfully,
JAS. S. NEGLEY,
[Inclosure No. 3.]
HEADQUARTERS NINETY-SECOND ILLINOIS VOLUNTEERS, Trenton, Ga., September 8, 1863.
Colonel GEORGE E. FLYNT, Assistant Adjutant-General:
COLONEL: Colonel Wilder, my brigade commander, bids me say to General Thomas that he can cross this command over the Tennessee River at any time, a few miles south of Chattanooga. He has one flat-boat on which he can cross one gun or one caisson at a time, and several skiffs and dug-outs, some large enough to cross 30 men at a time. Colonel Wilder was of the opinion that preparations were making by the enemy to evacuate Chattanooga.
The Tennessee can be forded easily with horses above Chattanooga, at the mouth of the Chickamauga Creek and at Thatcher's Ferry. Thatcher's is about 25 miles and the Chickamauga about 9 miles, from Chattanooga. The water would scarcely be saddle-skirt deep.
Colonel Wilder thinks there is only a light force on the river above Chattanooga,just to guard and watch.
S. D. ATKINS,
Colonel Ninety-second Illinois Volunteers, Wilder's Brigade.
HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, FOURTEENTH CORPS, Johnson's Crook, September 8, 1863.
Lieutenant-Colonel FLYNT, Assistant Adjutant-General, &c.:
COLONEL: This morning while upon the mountain beyond this I met a negro along with the rear of General Negley's train, riding a