including several bands of from 50 to 200 each, commanded by partisan leaders, such as Lyllie, Jewett, Slie, and others of lesser note. I encamped upon the enemy's road between Augusta and Millen during the night of the 27th, employing one-third of my entire force in tearing up track, the enemy keeping the majority of my troops constantly on the alert in repulsing determined and persistent attack. Learning positively that our prisoners had been removed from Millen, and hearing that a considerable force had been concentrated at that point under General Hardee, I deemed it prudent to return within supporting distance of the infantry. I fell back to this point under the most difficult circumstances, but successfully, and, with slight loss, repulsed the repeated and reckless attacks upon my rear and flank. From the enemy's first attack at Sylvan Grove, on the evening of the 26th, up to his final attack and repulse near Buck Head Creek, just enemy is known to have suffered severely. From reports of deserters, negroes, and prisoners, his loss could not have been less than 600 killed and wounded. I regret, General, that our prisoners had been removed before I could reach them. Every man of them had been taken away two days before I struck the railroad. I left Milledgeville at 6 o'clock on Thursday evening, and reached the railroad, with my advance at Waynesborough, at 11 p. m. Saturday evening, having marched upward of ninety miles in fifty-three hours, and this in the face of much opposition on the part of the enemy. I passed within five miles of the stockade above Millen in which our prisoners had been confined, and would have rescued them, as I promised, had they not been removed. My ambulances are now full of our wounded; wagons, however, will be emptied, so that none will be left behind. My command is in good condition, and as ready as ever for any enterprise. In the absence of any orders from your headquarters I will move upon the left and in advance of the Fourteenth Army Corps.
Hoping, General, that our efforts this far to carry out your orders and fulfill your expectations have won your approbation.
I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,
P. S. - I learn that a considerable force of the enemy, which has been concentrated for the last few days at Augusta, has been ordered to Millen, and that an effort will be made at that point to check our further advance. The Tenth and Twentieth North Carolina Regiments reached Augusta day before yesterday. Convalescent soldiers, soldiers home on furlough, the old and young, all are rapidly being concentrated at the country towns, and from these points are hurried to Augusta and Millen. With all their efforts, however, I do not think they can concentrate a very considerable force; yet I do not hesitate in saying, from my own experience within the last few days, that every effort will be made to check our farther advance. The enemy will boldly and recklessly attack whenever the opportunity offers.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
General Kilpatrick wishes to know what he shall do with prisoners. I have several officers of rank that I wish to retain as hostages. Several of my men have been killed after [being] taken prisoners; others have been found with their bodies mutilated, throats cut, &c. I will