War of the Rebellion: Serial 099 Page 0352 OPERATIONS IN N. C., S. C., S. GA., AND E. FLA. Chapter LIX.

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and the Edisto, save small picket posts. I understand that all the bridges on the Edisto are strongly guarded. After posting my pickets about the town, an attack was made upon a portion of the First Alabama Cavalry, holding the direct road to Augusta. Colonel Spencer was sent out with his brigade to feel of the enemy, and ascertain his strength. A fight ensued, in which six regiments of Allen's division, First, Third, Seventh, Ninth, Twelfth, and Fifty-first Alabama, were totally routed. Colonel Spencer alone conducted the fight, displaying much skill and great gallantry. Several hundred stand of arms were abandoned by the enemy, and left scattered along the road. One officer and many men were killed, and a large number wounded; several prisoners have been taken, and are still coming in. Colonel Spencer pursued the enemy nine miles in direction of Augusta from this point, and brought back to me as trophies the flags belonging to the Twelfth and Ninth Alabama Cavalry, and General Hagan's battle-flag. From prisoners I learn that Wheeler's command is very much scattered; that he has with him Anderson's division and Young's Virginia brigade only. Allen's division is picketing the country between the Edisto and the Salkehatchie. Iveron's division is upon the opposite side of the Salkehatchie, and Ferguson's division is between Brier Creek and the Ogreechee. I find plenty of corn for my command, and I think you will have no trouble in subsisting the animals of your whole army by foraging upon each side of the railroad. I trust that I am now carrying out your instructions, and that my operations will be satisfactory.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. KILPATRICK,

Brevet Major-General, Commanding Cavalry.

P. S. -There are rumors that portions of Hood's army, and some dismounted cavalry, independent of Lee's corps, are between this point and Augusta. I can learn nothing reliable.

J. KILPATRICK.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH, Hilton Head, S. C., February 8, 1865.

Rear-Admiral J. A. DAHLGREN,

Commanding South Atlantic Blockading Squadron:

ADMIRAL: I have the honor to inform you that I have received aleave of absence from the War Department, and that Major General Q. A. Gillmore, U. S. Volunteers, has arrived here from the North, with instructions to relieve me, temporarily, of the command of this department. In consequence of which, I regret to state that I shall not be able to meet you according to agreement during the demonstration. I am requested by Major-General Gillmore to say that he will do himself the honor of making you an official visit as soon after assuming command as he possibly can. If yiou are not within this harbor at the time, he will follow you to Charleston Harbor.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. G. FOSTER,

Major-General, Commanding.