the descent with empty trains would be quite as safe as ascending with loaded trains. The work required by this route will be light, except at the bridge.
Water. - At Graham's there is water sufficient for a brigade of men. Stock water at river, 1 mile. At Nickajack Cove is a supply of the best of water for the largest train and escort constantly. At Castle Rock Coal Mines the supply is unfailing, and if properly worked would supply as much stock daily as could be brought to it, say, for a train of 150 wagons. The difficulty is the passage to and from the watering trough is narrow. It would take as long to water as for a train passing to stop and water one by one. At Boiling Spring (the locality of these headquarters) there is water for the largest train constantly.
I add, further, the road by way of McDaniel's Gap might be used for the passage northward of empty trains, but last half mile is very rocky.
I am, general,very respectfully,
H. C. DUNN,
Lieutenant Tenth Kentucky and Topographical Engineer.
HDQR. FOURTH DIVISION, FOURTEENTH CORPS, Trenton, Ga., September 8, 1863-8 p.m.
COLONEL: Captain Van Buskirk, Ninety second Illinois Mounted Infantry, has just returned from a reconnaissance, via the Nickajack trail, toward Chattanooga. He went with 52 men to within 5 miles of Summertown; found no rebel troops; saw traces where a small force had been stationed. Citizens say the rebels left this morning, and said they had to "follow Bragg again." Rebel signal stations were abandoned last night, so the citizen state. The party had not time to go to the stations and return to-night. Will send Colonel Atkins with the Ninety-second Illinois Mounted Infantry on a reconnaissance toward Chattanooga to-morrow morning.
J. J. REYNOLDS,
Major-General, Commanding Division.
(Copy forwarded to department headquarters September 8, 1863.)
HDQRS. FIRST BRIG., FOURTH DIV., 14TH ARMY CORPS, September 8, 1863.
Major LEVERING, Assistant Adjutant-General:
Since receiving the rosters I have used all diligence to have them filled, and now have in my desk the rosters of the battery, Seventeenth Indiana, Seventy-second Indiana, and One hundred and twenty-third Illinois. The Ninety-second Illinois is at corps headquarters and the Ninety-eighth Illinois at Poe's Tavern, 15 or 18 miles from here. I have sent blanks and circular to them, but have had no returns yet. Until within the last few days regimental trains have been in Sequatchie Valley, so adjutants have been without pens, ink, or desks. The wagons were, however, ordered forward and reached their respective headquarters, but before unhitching,almost, they were ordered to the top of the mountain, information having