Guerrillas and raiders, seemingly emboldened by Forrest's operations, were also very active in Kentucky. The most noted of these was Morgan. With a force of from 2,000 to 3,000 cavalry he entered the State through Pound Gap in the latter part of May. On the 11th of June he attacked and captured Cynthiana, with its entire garrison. On the 12th he was overtaken by General Burbridge and completely routed, with heavy loss, and was finally driven out of the State. This notorious guerrilla was afterward surprised and killed near Greenville, Tenn., and his command captured and dispersed by General Gillem*
In the absence of official reports of the commencement of the Red River expedition, except so far as relates to the movements of the troops sent by General Sherman under A. J. Smith, I am unable to give the date of its starting. The troops under General Smith, comprising two divisions of the Sixteenth and a detachment of the Seventeenth Army Corps, left Vicksburg on the 10th of March and reached the designated point on Red River one day earlier than that appointed by General Banks. The rebel forces at Fort De Russy, thinking to defeat him, left the fort on the 14th to give him battle in the open field; but, while occupying the enemy with skirmishing and demonstrations, Smith pushed forward to Fort De Russy, which had been left with a weak garrison, and captured it, with its garrison, about 350 men, eleven pieces of artillery, and many small-arms. Our loss was but slight. On the 15th he pushed forward to Alexandria, which place he reached on the 18th. On the 21st he had an engagement with the enemy at Henderson's Hill, in which he defeated him, capturing 210 prisoners and four pieces of artillery. On the 28th he again attacked and defeated the enemy, under the rebel General Taylor, at Cane River.+ By the 26th General banks had assembled his whole army at Alexandria and pushed forward to Grand Ecore. On the morning of April 6 he moved from Grand Ecore. On the afternoon of the 7th his advance engaged the enemy near Pleasant Hill, the enemy attacked and defeated his advance, capturing nineteen pieces of artillery and immense amount of transportation and stores. During the night General Banks fell back to Pleasant Hill, where another battle was thought on the 9th, and the enemy repulsed with great loss. During the night General Banks continued his retrograde movement to Grand Ecore, and these to Alexandria, which he reached on the 27th of April. Here a serious difficulty arose in getting Admiral Porter's fleet, which accompanied the expedition, over the rapids, the water having fallen so much since they passed up as to prevent their return. At the suggestion of Colonel (now Brigadier-General) Bailey, and under this superintendence, wing-dams were constructed, by which the channel was contracted so that the fleet passed down the rapids in safety.
The army evacuated Alexandria on the 14th of May, after considerable skirmishing with the enemy's advance, and reached Morganza and Point Coupee, near the end of the month. The disastrous termination of this expedition, and the lateness of the season, rendered impracticable the carrying out of my plans of a movement in force sufficient to insure the capture of Mobile.
*For subordinate reports of operations in Kentucky and East Tennessee, see Vol. XXXIX.
+A mistake. A. J. Smith's command reached Cotile Landing March 28.