to be forded till this morning. We came over with the ambulance at 6 o'clock. Trains are waiting on both sides of the crossing. Empty trains can cross now, loaded ones by 2 p.m. We passed three empty trains of 100 wagons in all since we left Anderson's, and met the same number of trains, in all 175 wagons, loaded with forage and rations.
The pontoon bridge across the Sequatchie at Jasper will be one by noon to-day. There is a good pontoon bridge across Battle Creek here. General Morgan is doing as well on the road as he can with his scant supply of tools. He has failed to get them either from Bridgeport or Stevenson, and has sent to Nashville. The trains on the road are being pushed forward with energy. I think you will make a decided gain by establishing a feeding station for the animals on Walden's Ridge, under charge of Colonel Price,
Twenty-first Kentucky Volunteers. Every train must halt there long enough for one feed, and half the trains must stop there over night. By leaving forage there it will save hauling it to Chattanooga and back. There is no forage at all on the mountain. Another temporary forage depot somewhere in Sequatchie Valley-say half-way between Anderson's and Jasper - and another here, will be of great service. Half the mules we saw on the mountain had nothing to eat, and were looking very bad.
I go direct to Bridgeport. I sent the escort from Jasper and the ambulance form here. It is manned.
Very truly, yours,
J. A. GARFIELD,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers.
STEVENSON, October 17, 1863-8 p.m.
I reached Bridgeport at 1 p.m., called on General Howard, and found a large detachment of his men at work corduroying the road to Battle Creek. I met Mr. Stanton, who has made careful examination of the grading between Bridgeport and Jasper. He says there are nearly ties enough for the track, and with a sufficient force properly distributed he can complete a tramway in five or six days. I am satisfied it will be of great service to complete it at once.
I called on Captains Edward and Dudley. The steam-boat will be finished next week. The railroad bridge at Bridgeport is getting on well. Two spans are up and the trestle nearly all up; the rest of the bridge, I should think, could be completed in one week. I directed Captain Dudley to send three wagon-loads of tools and two kegs of nails to Colonels Smith and Price. Please send word to Colonel Smith at what particular point you want them. A large lot of wheelbarrows and tools arrived and are at Bridgeport to-day.
There appears to be a sad lack of efficiency in the quartermaster's department here. Captain Dudley tells me that Baker has 100 wagons lying idle at Stevenson. There are about 75 of Mitchell's wagons and a rabble of teamsters, negroes, and dismounted cavalrymen with them at Bridgeport. Mitchell was there last evening, but went back to New Market this morning.
General Howard sent a scouting party of 150 infantry yesterday to Trenton; they returned to-day and report no rebel force in Lookout Valley. At Trenton they captured one of Wheeler's captains, who was bearing important dispatches from Wheeler to Bragg, and also the regimental flag and the small papers of the Tennessee regiment