Having accomplished the object of my mission, to the extent of my ability, and believing that further search would be as ineffectual and fruitless as previous search has proven, I returned to the ferry and north bank of the river, thence to Stevenson, where I delivered the persons of Messrs Hugh and Adam Caperton and Mr. John Loweree into your charge and keeping.
In the course of my investigations I became acquainted with the fact that a strong guerrilla rendezvous exists at Raccon Creek, about 7 miles from Caperton's Ferry, under the leadership of a person named Cox. This man, with some 15 or 20 comrades, has dashed through the valley on Thursday or Friday last, committing serious depredations. This man is the same persons ho attacked the detachment of the Sixty-sixth Ohio a few weeks ago.
A rumor prevails in the valley that some 1,500 of Morgan's men are congregated in the mountains.
Numerous individuals in the valley and on the mountains are desirous of taking the oath of allegiance.
The arrested Caperton brothers are considered the wealthiest and most influential men in the valley. Both have nephews and sons in the rebel army; Mr. Loweree has two sons in the service of the rebels.
The roads are in execrable condition, miry and rocky.
I must render proper thanks to the offices and men assisting me, all from the Sixtieth New York, for alacrity and obedience to every command and the endeavor to do more than I required. I cannot too highly compliment them.
The expedition is under many obligations to Lieutenant Merriam and Brown, of the One hundred and forty-ninth New York, for their diligence and attention in ferrying the command over the river and return.
I am, captain, with great respect, your very obedient servant,
LEWIS R. STEGRMAN,
Major 102nd N. Y. V. V., Commanding Detch. 60th N. Y. V. V.
Captain S. B. WHEELOCK,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
APRIL 11, 1864.-Affair near Kelly's Plantation, Sulphur Springs Road, Ala.
Reports of Captain William Jessup, Fifth Ohio Cavalry.
SLEDGE'S PLANTATION, ALA.,
April 12. 1864.
COLONEL: I have the following report to make:
As my wagon, containing tne days' rations, a quantity of ammunition, and some clothing, camp and garrison equipage, was returning from Huntsville, Ala., it was attacked near Kelly's plantation, on the Sulphur Springs road, by a band of robbers, captured, and burned with all it contained. Three of the escort were also taken prisoners, and 6 mules and harness.
As soon as I learned of the affair I immediately went in pursuit, and was not half an hour behind them. They went west about 14 miles, and then bore to the north. At dark I was but ten minutes behind them. At this point roads led in every direction, and it was impossible for me to trail them farther.