War of the Rebellion: Serial 103 Page 0376 KY.,S.W.VA.,TENN., N. & C.GA.,MISS.,ALA., & W.FLA.

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river at the regular ferry with the rest of the party, but had gone about three miles lower down and crossed on a small flat-boat, and rejoined the party with the wagons near the outskirts of the town, and that they had all gone toward the south together. The colored man reported Mr. Davis as mounted upon a fine bay horse, and told his story so circumstantially that Colonel Harnden could not help believing it. The ferry-man was called up and examined, but either through stupidity or design, succeeded in withholding whatever he knew in regard to the case. But in view of the facts already elicited, after detailing Lieutenant Lane and sixty men to remain at Dublin, and to scout the country in all directions, Colonel Harnden, at an early hour in the morning, began the pursuit of the party just mentioned. Five miles below Dublin he obtained additional information from a woman which left him no room to doubt that he was on the track of Davis in person. He dispatched a messenger to inform General Croxton of his good fortune, and pushed rapidly in pursuit. The trail led southward through a region of pine forests and cypress, almost uninhabited, and therefore affording no food for either men or horses. The rain began to fall, and as there was no road, the tracks of the wagon wheels upon the sandy soil were soon obliterated. A citizen was pressed and compelled to act as guide till the trail was again discovered. The pursuit was continued with renewed vigor, but, as the wagon tracks were again lost in the swamp bordering on Alligator Creek, the pursuing party were again delayed till a citizen could be found to guide them to the road upon which the trail was again visible. Colonel Harnden reports this day to have been one of great toil to both men and horses. They had marched forty miles through an almost trackless forest, much of the way under the rain, and in water up to their saddle girths. They bivouacked after dark on the borders of Gun Swamp, and during the night were again drenched by rain. Before daylight of the 9th they renewed their march, their route leading almost southwest, through swamp and wilderness, to Brown's Ferry, where they crossed to the south side of the Ocmulgee River. In his anxiety to ferry his command over rapidly, Colonel Harnden allowed the boat to be overloaded. A plank near the bow was sprung loose, causing the boat to leak badly, and, as no means were at hand with which to make repairs, lighter loads had to be carried. This prolonged the crossing nearly two hours. Colonel Harnden learned from the ferryman that the party he was pursuing had crossed about 1 a.m. that morning, and were only a few hours ahead of him on the road leading to Irwinville. At Abbeville, a village of three families, he halted to feed, and just as he was renewing his march he met the advance party of the Fourth Michigan Cavalry, Lieutenant Colonel B. D. Pritchard commanding, moving on the road from Hawkinsville. Ordering his detachment to continue its march, Colonel Harnden rode to meet Colonel Pritchard, and gave him such information in regard to Davis' movements as he had been able to gather. This was about 3 p.m. After a conversation between these officers, the precise details of which are variously reported, they separated, Colonel Harnden to rejoin his command, already an hour or more in advance, and Colonel Pritchard continuing his march along the south side of the Ocmulgee.

It will be remembered that Colonel Pritchard had begun his march from the vicinity of Macon, on the evening of May 7, under verbal orders given him by General Minty, in pursuance of my instructions. His attention was particularly directed to the crossings of the Ocmulgee River, between Hawkinsville and Jacksonville and the mouth of the Ohoopee, with the object of intercepting Davis and such other rebel chiefs as might be making their way out of the country by the