and the general commanding orders that you leave your steam-boat with a small guard with orders to proceed to Kingston with all dispatch, there to await your further commands; and that you, with your troops, move by the best practicable route directly for Philadelphia and Loudon, communicating with these headquarters your position during the day to-morrow. The general will be near the head of this column on the direct road for Loudon.
You need not overload your troops with provisions as the country abounds with everything.
By order of Maj. General W. T. Sherman:
R. M. SAWYER,
HEADQUARTERS FOURTH ARMY CORPS,
Kincannon's Ferry, December 1, 1863.
Proceed to Knoxville, Tennessee, with your division without delay.
As soon as you shall deem it safe, you will precede your command in person, assume control of the forces at and near Kingston, and make every preparation for crossing this command and also that of General Sherman, now en route to that place.
It is probable that lumber and other material can be obtained to construct a pontoon or trestle bridge.
As you pass through the country give orders to citizens to bring into Kingston beef, flour, corn-meal, forage, &c., upon promise of immediate payment.
Communicate to me all important information you may obtain.
HEADQUARTERS ELEVENTH CORPS,
Athens, December 1, 1863-4.45 p.m.
GENERAL: The corps is encamped between the Madisonville and Loudon road. From citizens I have gathered the following information: General Leadbetter, of the rebel army, staid at Athens last night. He came from Loudon and proceeded south on the old Federal road. The person at whose house General Leadbetter staid says that he (General Leadbetter) told him that Longstreet has attacked Knoxville and was repulsed, and that he is now retreating toward Murphy, N. C. General Leadbetter had been sent by General Bragg to General Longstreet to inform the latter to attack if he (Longstreet) thought that anything could be done. General Leadbetter had also orders to gather all the forces along the line of railroad, and send them to him. It is reported that a drove of 200 hogs was stopped on the old Federal road by our cavalry, near the Hiwassee Ferry, and captured.
O. O. HOWARD,