Whether a feint or in reality they intend crossing, I have no means of knowing. I have directed him to move up his artillery to cover the crossing with what force he can spare, and repel any attempt that may be made. These reports make it quite uncertain where Forrest is. It has been reported to me by prisoners and citizens that he had gone below.
Four deserters from Buckner are just in. They left him last night at Ooltewah. Everything was packed to march, and sick placed on the cars. He has two divisions of two brigades each.
W. B. HAZEN,
P. S.-Prisoners report the principal part of Bragg's army still about Tyner's.
HDQRS. FIRST BRIGADE, SECOND CAVALRY DIVISION, Sale Creek Camp Ground, September 8, 1863.
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Left Flank:
SIR: Last night, prior to the receipt of General Hazen's letter, I received information from citizens that Pegram was positively crossing at Locke's Ferry, near Washington, and deserters stated that they had seen the ropes and nails at the head of the island, near Blythe's Ferry, with which to construct a bridge of the boats now in Hiwassee, for the purpose of crossing Scott's and Forrest's forces. I immediately strengthened my pickets and sent out scouts. i have had no reports in this morning as yet. I will act as directed by General Hazen the moment I hear from the scouts. I believe that Pegram's and Scott's brigades are stationed from Blytne's Ferry to Charleston. Will it be safe to leave them in our rear?
I am momentarily expecting Colonel Klein, with the battalion Third Indiana and my supply train, from McMinnville. I should very much like to form adjunction with him before moving. It will give me 200 more men.
A courier has just arrived from Colonel Byrd, a copy of whose dispatch I inclose herewith.
I have also received report from picket at Blythe's. Pegram is positively back of Blythe's Ferry. This would leave Forrest three brigades (Armstrong, Dibrell, and Scott), as stated by Colonel Byrd. I will await further orders at this point.
I am, respectfully, your obedient servant,
HDQRS. FIRST BRIG., FOURTH DIV.,23rd ARMY CORPS, Kingston, Tenn., September 7, 1863.
[Colonel R. H. G. MINTY:]
COLONEL: As your courier is now going to return I will send you some information as to my future movements. I am ordered with my brigade to Athens, Tenn., and have orders to scout up as far as Decatur or Smith's Cross-Roads, where I understand your brigade now is.
One of Forrest's body-guard came in yesterday and a negro servant