War of the Rebellion: Serial 103 Page 0356 KY.,S.W.VA.,TENN.,N. & C.GA.,MISS.,ALA., & W.FLA.

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to turn over his few remaining horses to General Upton and continue the instruction of his command at Eastport. It was expected that the supply departments would soon be able to furnish horses and Spencer carbines, so as to enable him to take the field and join the corps some where in Alabama or Georgia. By a voluntary arrangement between Bvt. Brigadier General D. E. Coon, commanding the Second Brigade of Hatch's division, and Brigadier-General Croxton, the former also turned over to the latter all the Spencer carbines then in his brigade. By these means the troops of the First, Second, and Fourth Divisions, with the exception of a few hundred, were armed with the Spencer carbine, and all had arms using cartridges with metallic cases. The heavy rains continued, in consequence of which the river overflowed its banks and destroyed a large quantity of grain accumulated for the horses at Chickasaw Landing. The steam-boats could not reach the highlands, except by working their way through the woods and fields, until the river subsided to its natural banks. The crossing was therefore delayed till the 18th instant. Division commanders were directed to see that every trooper was provided with five days' light rations in haversacks, twenty-four pounds of grain, one hundred rounds of ammunition, and one pair of extra shoes for his horse; that the pack animals were loaded with five days' of hard bread, ten of sugar, coffee, and salt, and eighty rounds of ammunition. These calculations were made upon a basis of a sixty days' campaign, and under the supposition that the command would be able to supply itself from the enemy's country with everything else in abundance. Only enough hard bread was taken to last during the march through the sterile region of North Alabama. One light canvas pontoon train of thirty boats, with the fixtures complete, transported by fifty-six mule wagons, and in charge of a battalion of the Twelfth Missouri Cavalry, Major J. M. Hubbard commanding, was also got ready to accompany the expedition. The entire train, in charge of Captain W. E. Brown, acting chief quartermaster, numbered not far form 250 wagons, escorted by 1,500 dismounted men of the three divisions. These men were organized into battalions and commanded by Major (now Colonel) Archer.

At daylight on the 22nd of March, all the preliminary arrangements having been perfected and the order of march having been designated, the movement began. The entire valley of the Tennessee, having been devastated by two years of warfare, was quite as destitute of army supplies as the hill country south of it. In all directions for 120 miles there was almost absolute destitution. It was, therefore, necessary to scatter the troops over a wide extent of country and march as rapidly as circumstances would permit. This was rendered safe by the fact that Forrest's forces were at that time near West Point, Miss., 150 miles southwest of Eastport, while Roddey's occupied Montevallo, on the Alabama and Tennessee River Railroad, nearly the same distance to the southeast. By starting on diverging roads the enemy was left in doubt as to our real object, and compelled to watch equally Columbus, Tuscaloosa, and Selma. Upton's division, followed by his train, marched rapidly by the most easterly route, passing by Barton's Station, Throckmorton's Mills, Russellville, Mount Hope, and Jasper, to Saunders' Ferry, on the West Fork of the Black Warrior River. Long's division marched by the way the pontoon train, and having mistaken the road by which it should have ascended the mountain, was considerably delayed in reaching Russellsville. From this place it marched