ordered forward to the support of General Sturgis immediately on its arrival here. The train of the brigade was left at this place on the west side of the river. I have received no report or information of any kind from Colonel Mott, but expect to do so to-day, as I sent a courier forward last night with some official papers for him.
There are several hundred dismounted men and stragglers belonging to the cavalry command now at this place, and large wagon trains belonging to General Sturgis' forces. There appear to be no officers in charge of these men or trains and teamsters, and the consequence is that the soldiers are marauding and pillaging, and the animals attached to the trains are not properly cared for and supplied with forage.
General Foster was here day before yesterday, but I did not report to him for orders, not considering it my duty to do so. I have had no further instructions than those I received from General Cox before I came here.
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
M. D. MANSON,
Brigadier General, Comdg. Second Div., Twenty-third Army Corps.
HDQRS. FIFTEENTH PENNSYLVANIA CAVALRY,
Montcastle's, on Mossy Creek, at Mouth of Chucky Road,
Three Miles from Mossy Creek, December 28, 1863-9 p. m.
I have the honor to report that I reached this position about half an hour ago, having scouted with my command via the Dumpling Valley road to its intersection with the Mossy Creek and Mouth of Chucky road, at Findlay's Gap, 6 1/2 miles from Mossy Creek; thence through Findlay's Gap, on the last-named road, to within about 1 1/2 miles of Widow Kimbrough's Cross-Roads (which is 9 miles from Mossy Creek and at the intersection of the Mouth of Chucky road with the Morristown and Dandridge road).
The farthest point I reached was a camp of the enemy's cavalry, about one-half mile beyond Emsley Bettus', and one-fourth mile beyond the intersection of the road leading from Talbott's Station through Mansfield's Gap to the Mouth of Chucky road. This intersection is about 1 mile beyond Mansfield's Gap and 5 miles from Talbott's Station.
At Emsley Bettus' a right-hand fork goes toward Dandridge, intersecting the Morristown and Dandridge road at the Widow Lyle's, 4 1/2 miles from Dandridge and 1 mile this side of Coyle's place, where rebel cavalry was encamped las night and this morning. It was at this point (Emsley Bettus') that I found the rebel pickets, 4 or 5 in number, who fired and retreated toward the Widow Kombrough's. It being dark, they could not be captured, and I only went on to the camp referred to, which had been occupied apparently by a small regiment and had been evacuated quite recently. Before reaching this point, at the intersection of the Dumpling Valley road with the Mouth of Chucky road at Brooks', 6 1/2 miles from Mossy Creek, I found the camp of another party of rebel cavalry, about 80 in number, who had come there at 11 o'clock last night, and had left at about 12 m. to-day, taking the road toward Widow Kimbrough's. I after-