HEADQUARTERS CHIEF OF CAVALRY, DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND, Island Ferry, Tenn., September 23, 1863.
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: In accordance with orders received yesterday morning, I crossed my command over the Tennessee River yesterday afternoon. I immediately sent patrols up and down the river, and have received reports from both. The one sent up the river communicated with Colonel Wilder's command, and, from the inclosed report received from the brigade commander this morning, you will learn of the disposition of his troops and the result of his observation and operations. The patrol sent down the river find some of our infantry and artillery posted along the river from this point [the pontoon bridge] to Williams' Island. The patrol is still out. They learned nothing concerning the enemy. I also sent last night one regiment to take post at Jasper, with orders to patrol the roads and watch the river. This regiment also furnished an escort for a small train that went to Bridgeport. I have ordered out parties to scour the country in search of forage, as directed in your note received last night, and have made them strong enough to answer the double purpose of scouting parties at the same time. Inclosed please find another communication, just received from Colonel Miller.
I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ROBT. B. MITCHELL,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Cavalry.
[Inclosure No. 1.]
HDQRS. FIRST BRIG., FOURTH DIV., 14TH ARMY CORPS, Friar's Island, September 23, 1863-2 a.m.
W. H. SINCLAIR,
Your line and copy of General Rosecrans' order just received. Headquarters of brigade are at Friar's house. Colonel Wilder is sick, and leaves for home in the morning. The command is disposed of as follows: Second Michigan Cavalry at Harrison's Landing, guarding the river there and as far up as Iqou's Ferry. Four regiments, a battery, and three howitzers here. One regiment gone to Stevenson in charge of prisoners. Citizens report the enemy at South Chickamauga bridge, on the other side of the river. I yesterday had his works opposite Friar's Island demolished, and have made all preparations for defense I could on this side. I yesterday sent a scouting party to Sale Creek, who have just returned and report no enemy in that vicinity on this side the river. They met a scouting party from General Burnside's advance, who report the enemy's cavalry at Cleveland, 3,000 strong, under Scott. Colonel Byrd's headquarters are at Athens. I have a courier line established from here to Chattanooga.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. O. MILLER,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.