difficulty, only a battalion of militia having been left to watch the crossing, and also reached the river opposite Campbellton with but slight opposition. Our infantry right was now at a point five miles in rear of the enemy's left, ten miles from the key of his position - Kenesaw - and only four miles from his railroad, and six from the Chattahoochee, while we controlled the Sandtown road to the river. The position seemed exposed and the movement to gain it hazardous, yet when once gained and intrenched it was really secure, for the enemy could not detach force enough to dislodge us without abandoning his position about Kenesaw and hazarding a general engagement in open field.
The enemy having retreated from Kenesaw during the night of the 2d, the Army of the Tennessee moved from the left the next morning in accordance with previous orders, and passed my position on the right about 3 p. m. In the mean time my skirmishers, supported by a brigade, were pushed down across Nickajack Creek, in pursuit of the enemy until the Armies of the Tennessee and Cumberland united, when I massed my troops in rear of General McPherson's, ready to support him, if desired. There was, however, no opportunity for using my troops in the pursuit to the Chattahoochee, and on the 6th I moved with my infantry to Smyrna Camp-Ground, and received orders from the general-in-chief to prepare for crossing the river at some point from the mouth of Soap Creek to the Shallow Ford, near Roswell, while Generals Thomas, McPherson, and Stoneman should feign below. General Stoneman was left to continue operations on the right in conjunction with General McPherson, and I have no report from him of his subsequent movements. On the 7th I reconnoitered about the mouth of Soap Creek (Phillips' Ferry), and intended to continue the reconnaissance as far as the Shallow Ford, near Roswell, on the following day, but learning from the general-in-chief on the 7th that the main body of the enemy's cavalry was evidently opposite our right, and that he therefore desired me to cross as soon as possible, I determined to make the attempt to cross by surprise, if possible, or by force, if necessary, at the mouth of Soap Creek (Phillips' Ferry). The point was a very difficult one for crossing in the face of strong resistance, but was very favorable for a surprise, and was the only practicable crossing-place I had had time to reconnoiter. Moreover, my reconnaissance satisfied me that it was held only by a light force with but little artillery. Accordingly, we marched at daylight on the 8th; General Cox had the advance and placed his troops and artillery in the woods near the position assigned them, with such secrecy as to awaken no suspicion on the part of the enemy of the presence of more than a few horsemen. The pontoon train under Colonel Buell, of the Army of the Cumberland, was halted some distance from the river, the boats brought down by hand and launched in the creek far enough from its mouth to be beyond the enemy's view, while General cox sent a brigade of his division some distance up the river to a fish-dam, very difficult of access, but upon which it was reported foot-men could get across. At the appointed time the artillery was pushed quickly into position and opened its fire, a line of battle advanced, rapidly firing, to the river-bank, while the bateaux, loaded with men, were pulled down the creek and across the river, and the advance of Cameron's brigade made their way as well as they might across the fish-dam. The astonished rebels fired a single shot from their single gun, delivered a few random discharges of musketry, and