MORRISTOWN, November 7, 1863.
Your dispatch received. I have about 2,500 effective men, but not exceeding 1,800 serviceable horses, including Fourteenth Illinois, that is back with General Willcox.
There is, as I am informed, no forage this side the Chucky, excepting that on farms that are protected by safeguards. The quartermaster at Knoxville has forage stored here. Can I disregard the safeguard [I understand from Colonel Garrard there is an abundance of forage within 3 miles, covered by the safeguard], or can I use the forage stores here?
I saw this morning a captain of the Second East Tennessee who was in the fight; he represented that quite a number of his regiment escaped. I think that one-half the entire regiment was captured. The half left, under command of Major Carpenter, and probably the major part of the half called to support the Seventh Ohio, escaped capture.
J. M. SHACKELFORD,
HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, CAVALRY CORPS, Rockford, Tennessee, November 7, 1863.
Chief of Staff, Army of the Ohio:
GENERAL: I have received reports from the scouts on the Niles' Ferry and Morganton roads, 10 miles beyond Maryville; all quiet, and no signs of any rebels on this side the river.
Reports of Colonel Garrard's fight have reached here through persons coming from Knoxville, and it is now a current rumor. I do not think the rebels intend to advance at present. From the best information, the fords are now too deep for artillery, and the boats are not able to cross them except very slowly.
W. P. SANDERS,
HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, CAVALRY CORPS, Maryville, November 7, 1863-7.30 a.m.
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: Mr. McMurray, a Union man who lives at Motley's Ford, on the other side, passed over the river last night, and says the rebel infantry has all left the river and gone back, and that two pieces of artillery are in position at the ford. The cavalry, which he says numbers about 2,700, have been ordered to be ready with three days' rations, &c., but the men do not know whether they are to move back or this way. There was not a man on this side. The ford is bad, and quite deep. I have sent out a strong scout; leave a regiment here, and am just moving back to Little River.
W. P. SANDERS,