War of the Rebellion: Serial 056 Page 0215 Chapter XLIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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would be a desperate attempt, as the roads are bad and the country pretty much fed on along the route.

The firing last heard by my advance scout was about 5 miles below Knoxville. The rebels may be trying to draw Burnside out of his works. Will get your message to him if possible.

O. B. WILLCOX,

Brigadier-General.

CUMBERLAND GAP, November 21, 1863-6.30 p.m.

Captain W. P. ANDERSON,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

General Willcox's command has reached the gap; his rear guard at Tazewell. All quiet here. Hundreds of citizens fleeing from East Tennessee. They report the invading force to number 40,000 to 50,000, under Longstreet; not reliable.

What news have you in Cincinnati? I fear we shall suffer for subsistence. To-night will exhaust the bread and flour. Small rations for eight days. Forage scarce. Confederate General Wheeler's corps of mounted men is said to be intended for Kentucky. If so, I think they will pass up via Big Creek Gap and Williamsburg.

W. C. LEMERT,

Colonel, &c.

CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee, November 21, 1863-2 p.m. (Received 10.55 p.m.)

Maj. General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief:

Dispatches just received from General Willcox. He was at Tazewell this morning, but retreating toward Cumberland Gap. His cavalry attempted to communicate with Burnside, but could not effect it. A severe fight took place on 19th, enemy carrying two intrechments with heavy loss. Our attack on enemy's right has not yet commenced. Troops have been moving night and day ever since Sherman appeared at Bridgeport, but narrow and bad roads have made an earlier attack impossible. Sherman's advance division moved up to Trenton several days since, and advanced their position south each day, keeping up their old camp-fires at night and building new ones where they were, to give the appearance of concentrating a large force in that direction. A portion of this division ascended the south end of Lookout Mountain. Owing to heavy rain last night it will be impossible to attack Bragg before Monday.

U. S. GRANT,

Major-General, Commanding.

WASHINGTON, November 21, 1863-11.15 a.m.

Major-General GRANT,

Chattanooga, Tennessee:

Telegrams from General Willcox, dated yesterday, at Bean's Station and Clinch Mountain, contain rumors that Burnside is surrounded