DIVISION on the Burnt Hickory and Allatoona road to Hardshell Church, sending out recossaisances on all the roads. The Fourth U. S. [Cavalry] drove infantry pickets to their camp on the Allatoona road beyond Kemp's Mill; saw the camp, and an attemps was made by the infantry of the enemy to cut them off. On the 6th I applied for instructions, at the same time reporting that I covered all the roads and has sent out souts; at 9 a. m. was informed by you, " I have sent orders which will define operations for today. " A few minutes before I received Special Field Orders, Numbers 85, October 6, 1864, and immediately complied with same orders. I think now, as I thought on the 5th, that the one reduced DIVISION of cavalry could not have gone direct to Allatoona from Hardsheell Church, but had my orders of the 6th directed me to make the reconnaissance made by General Cox on that day, instead of the 5th, as he reports,* I could have obtained the same information. My cavalry has nevery avoided the cavalry of the enemy in any force; it has too often contended with it and with sucess; during the present scout has seen very few cavalry. The orders of the major - general commanding have been complied with, and to enable me to do so I held my command in readiness, picketing only the roads, and sending out scouts until I could learn what disposition he wished made. I do not regard the remarks derogatory to my command, when made by those unacquainted with the orders given me, but desiring to do my duty and obey orders, as does my command, I confess that it is not only discouraging but mortifying to hear of the major - general commanding censuring the cavalry publiclu in the hearing of officers enlisted men.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. L. ELLIOTT,
Brigadier - General and Chief of Cavalry.
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION ON THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, Kenesaw, October 7, 1864.
I have your communication of today and will answer at length at a more leisure moment. Our cavalry is vanting in enterprise. I am fully conscious of the many difficulties which they encounter in so wooded a country and such blind roads, but'tis useless to discuss these now. I want to prevent Hood crossing the Allatoona range, toward the Etowah bridge, and also to keep the infantry force employed in repairing the damage already done to our road. I wish you, therefore to keep Garrard's DIVISION and Kilpatrick employed in harassing the enemy's rear, picking off parties and also striking whenever the offers an opportunity. His road must be equally bad as ours, and will occasion delay and stranggling ofwhich our cavalry may taken advantage. I don't care of pursuing much below Dallas, but I do want to know that Hood's main army has passed below Dallas toward Carrollton. If our cavalry will make bold and handsome dashes I promise to make full and public acknowledgment of their services.
I am, yours,
W. T. SHERMAN,
Major - General, Commanding.
* See p. 115.