to Stevens' Gap. The Dougherty's Gap road leaves the Stevens' Gap road some 6 or 8 miles from where you now are. You will be careful to keep the Stevens' Gap road.
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Captain and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS TWENTIETH ARMY CORPS, Foot of Cooper's Gap, September 16, 1863-10 a. m.
Commanding Third Division, Twentieth Army Corps:
GENERAL: General McCook directs that you will bivouac your command at the foot of the mountain after having crossed into the valley, and there await further orders from him. You will find plenty of water in that vicinity, and forage can be procured by you about 2 miles up the valley.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
FRANK J. JONES,
Captain and Aide-de-Camp.
HEADQUARTERS U. S. FORCES, Camp at Dougherty's Gap, September 16, 1863.
Lieutenant Colonel GATES P. THRUSTON:
COLONEL: I have the honor to announce the arrival of my command at this point. Your order to move did not reach me until about 5 p. m., yesterday. The trains were immediately started as directed, but the hour was so late that I had either to make a night march over a route with which I was not familiar and without reliable guides, or wait until morning. Colonel Dodge's brigade, moreover, was out of rations, and had to be supplied, and, in addition, reports from our cavalry gave me some uneasiness in regard to the corps train, the rear of which I thought was threatened to some extent and desired to protect. For all these reasons I found it impossible to move until this morning. I marched at daylight, and reached the gap at 11 a. m. Had I attempted a night march I should not probably have arrived here sooner, if as soon. The road (Dougherty's Gap road) from falls of Little River is a very good one.
Forage is very scarce here, and it is very difficult to procure water for the animals. To water the latter it is necessary to go down into the cove probably 2 miles or more from my camp. General Crook advised to encamp in the cove. If my command will probably remain here any time, I respectfully submit to Major-General McCook the propriety of removing my camp to the valley.
The cavalry detachment which was to have reported has not been heard from. I need it badly for courier purposes, foraging, &c.; in fact, it will be almost impossible to get along here without it.
Trusting that my explanation of the cause that rendered it impossible to march until this morning may be satisfactory to the general commanding corps,
I have the honor to be, colonel, yours, very respectfully,
W. H. LYTLE,