his reconnaissance at 1 p. m. to within 2 miles of Gordon's Mills, driving the enemy before him by sharp skirmishing. Jackson's brigade of infantry encamped there last night. In view of these facts the general commanding directs you to move your whole force across, by the most available route, as quickly as possible, to the Rossville and La Fayette road, to some defensible point between Gordon's Mills and Shields' house, and close Wood up with you or yourself to him. The northeastern spur of Pigeon Mountain must afford strong positions where you can maintain yourself, if necessary, against a superior force. Your main object will be to put yourself in such a position that you can fall back on this place in case of repulse, and at the same time be ready, if General Thomas becomes engaged in the valley of Chattanooga Creek, to attack the enemy with the utmost vigor. Should you pass any mountain gaps leading to La Fayette, you will secure and hold them. Change your courier line to the most direct route to this place, and report to headquarters very frequently. A copy of this dispatch has been sent to General Wood as you may not be in communication with him. Hold your troops well in hand, and use Wilder according to your discretion till he can safely join General Thomas.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. A. GARFIELD,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.
(Copy to General Wood.)
HDQRS. FIRST BRIG., FOURTH DIV., 14TH ARMY CORPS,
Tunnel Hill, September 11, 1863.
Assistant Adjutant-General, Twenty-first Army Corps:
I have the honor to report my command at this place. I have driven the enemy from Ringgold to a point 2 miles beyond Tunnel Hill, and will picket strongly on the front. While I write, my advance is skirmishing briskly. The enemy disputed every inch of the way stubbornly. I have come over ground hard to advance on when disputed as it was to-day. My loss is 1 killed and 7 wounded. Enemy's loss not known. Scott's cavalry brigade has been fighting us.
A deserter report two brigades of infantry in Dalton this morning. If you send me any orders, please do so before morning. I send you a rebel mail, captured at Tunnel Hill to-day.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your to command,
J. T. WILDER,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
HEADQUARTERS TWENTY-FIRST ARMY CORPS,
Ringgold, September 12, 1863-1 a. m.
Respectfully forwarded with request that this, four of General Palmer's and two of General Wood's (latter dated 7 and 8.30 p. m., 6th instant), be returned, otherwise important information will hereafter be delayed to await copying.
T. L. CRITTENDEN,