I ascertained on the 2nd instant that the enemy's cavalry had destroyed the railroad at or near Big Shanty; that Wheeler was at Villanow and had sent a detachment to assault Dalton, which sent in a summons to surrender, but did not wait to attack. Later in the day a train was captured near Acworth and the road torn up three miles south of Allatoona, and on the following day (October 3) General Sherman ordered me to suspend a movement I contemplated, stating that Hood was gradually developing his plans, which were of a very extensive character. At noon on the 4th instant they were sufficiently discovered to induce General Sherman to signal from Kenesaw (telegraph communication having been destroyed) that Hood was moving on Allatoona, thence to Rome. Large fires were discovered from the Allatoona heights along the track toward Big Shanty. In short there remained no doubt of Hood's entire army being near the railroad north of Kenesaw. My command was in readiness to move in the morning, either on Wheeler, if he should attempt to pass south, or to the assistance of General Raum at Cartersville or Allatoona, in case those places were threatened. At the request of General Raum for re-enforcements I telegraphed to Kingston for cars, intending sending a brigade to Cartersville to be placed at his disposal, but another signal from General Sherman directing me to move with my whole command changed the programme, and I immediately got ready to move to Allatoona with the DIVISION as soon as the cars should arrive from Kingston. The train, in moving down to Rome, threw some fourteen or fifteen cars off the track, and threatened to delay us till the morning of the 5th instant, but the activity of the officers and railroad employes enabled me to secure a train of twenty cars about 7 p. m. of the 4th. Onto them I loaded three regiments of Colonel Rowett's brigade and a portion of the Twelfth Illinois Infantry, with about 165,000 rounds of ammunition, and started for Allatoona at 8. 30 p. m., where we arrived at 1 a. m. on the morning of the 5th instant, immediately disembarked, and started the train back, with injunctions to get the balance of the brigade and as many of the next brigade as they could carry and return by day-light. They unfortunately met with an accident that delayed them so as to deprive me of any re-enforcements until about 9 p. m. of the 5th.
In justice to Messrs. Drake and Hughes, gentlemen stationed at Kingston, connected with the railroad, I would state that the late freshets had carried away the bridge at Resaca about the time the railroad was destroyed south of Allatoona, leaving between the two points but two locomotives and but very few cars; that the road had been washed so as to cause the track to spread frequently, and that they and their employes were in nowise responsible for the accident that delayed me and finally deprived me of the much needed re-enforcements. The ammunition being unloaded and the train sent back for re-enforcements, I rode around and inspected the ground, and made such disposition of the troops as in my judgment was necessary to hold the place until day-light. I then learned from Colonel Tourtellotte that the garrison embraced the Fourth Minnesota Infantry, 450 men, Major J. C. Edson commanding; Ninety-THIRD Illinois Infantry, 290 men. Major Fisher commanding; seven companies Eighteenth Wisconsin Infantry, 150 men, Lieutenant- Colonel Jackson commanding; Twelfth Wisconsin Battery, 6 guns Lieutenant Amsden commanding, furnishing a force of 890 men, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel J. E. Tourtellotte, Fourth Minnesota Volunteer Infantry. I took with me of Rowett's brigade, of this DIVISION, eight companies Thirty-ninth Iowa Infantry, 280 men, Lieut-