December 30, 1863.
Two days ago my scouts captured a dispatch from Roddey to Forrest, in which he says he has 16 boats ready to cross below Florence. Day before yesterday gun-boats were at Savannah. Breckinridge's men say Forrest is trying to get out of Tennessee, but I do not consider that reliable. My scouts have gone out there and have orders to report to any of our cavalry they may see. I think you better come down here.
G. M. DODGE,
COLUMBIA, Tennessee, December 30, 1863.
(Received January 2, 1864.)
Major General S. A. HURLBUT,
Commanding Sixteenth Army Corps:
Rebel dispatches just captured indicate that Forrest intends crossing the Tennessee River somewhere below the mouth of Duck River. I have about 5,000 cavalry ready to co-operate with you here at Pulaski. Had I better cross the whole of this force, or hold a portion of it on the peninsula between the Tennessee and Cumberland?
What are the position and movements of your forces and those of the rebels from your latest advices?
WM. SOOY SMITH,
Brigadier-General, Chief of Cavalry.
COLDWATER, December 30, 1863-8. a. m.
(Received 2 p. m.)
Forrest passed here on the 23th. Divided his forces. Unarmed men went south nearly to Holly Springs, thence west. Armed force crossed Coldwater at Lockhart's Mill. From best information obtained he has been joined by Chalmers or Lee at a point south of Coldwater. Has sent conscripts and plunder south, and with combined forces contemplates another movement on the railroad. In view of this information, together with that received from you of force crossing Coldwater going north, I have thought best to move to Mount Pleasant. I have Second Brigade southwest on trail of enemy. If information will justify, Second Brigade will pursue conscripts or fall on rear of Forrest should he move north.
B. H. GRIERSON,
WASH. TAYLOR'S FARM,
December 30, 1863-9.30 a. m.
Forrest and Chalmers left here 3 p. m. yesterday. Chalmers was camped at Byhalia yesterday, and came here to consult Forrest. They both left about 3 p. m. There is every indication that they