War of the Rebellion: Serial 103 Page 0422 KY.,S. W. VA.,TENN.,N. & C. GA.,MISS.,ALA., & W. FLA.

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men and animals and reconnoitering and trying to discover some safe exit by which to rejoin the corps. The bridges over Hurricane Creek had been burned, making it necessary to move southeast in the direction of Marion, which would bring me directly in contact with Jackson's division, supported by a brigade of Chalmers' division, at Greensborough. Seeing no possible means of getting east to join the corps, I determined to recross the Black Warrior, and if possible to destroy the railroad between Demopolis and Meridian, as I had been verbally instructed to destroy it west of Selma and about Uniontown. At this time I could hear of no troops that could offer any resistance to my movement, and I was assured to Tombigbee could be forded at Jones' Bluff. Reasoning upon this, as on all occasions, that if Forrest detached a force inferior to my own to look after me, I would smash it up and go whither I pleased, while if he sent a superior force it was my object to draw it as far as possible from the theater in which the corps was operating, thus giving General Wilson still greater advantage in point of numbers, which I would be careful should not be counterbalanced by any disasters to my command. My only apprehension was that the general commanding would be embarrassed by my delay in joining, and that it might seriously affect the rapidity of his movements, on which I felt so much depended. Accordingly I dispatched a scout, with a dispatch in cipher, informing him fully of my movements and designs. April 5, recrossed the Black Warrior, burned the bridge, and took the Columbus road, encamping that night twenty-five miles from Northport at King's Store, and sending a company of the Sixth Kentucky with Captain Sutherland, my assistant adjutant-general, on the upper Columbus road, with directions to cross the Sipsey, turn south, and join me. April 6, took the road to pleasant Ridge, and after marching twelve miles came to Lanier's Mills, on Sipsey, eight miles from Vienna, where I learned that 3,000 men left by Forrest at West Point were marching down the Tombigbee, and that owing to the late rains that stream could not be forded. Here also I learned that Selma had been taken, and that Forrest was at Marion and Jackson in the neighborhood of Tuscaloosa. It was plainly impossible to execute my designs, and I determined to return to Northport, by which time I hoped to learned definitely the movements of the corps from Selma. Accordingly I crossed Sipsey, burning the mills with a large amount of flour, meal, and meat, and took the road for Tuscaloosa, and after marching several miles halted two hours to feed. We had just resumed the march when Wirt Adams attacked my rear guard with two brigades, numbering 2,800 men, drove in the rear regiment (Sixth Kentucky Cavalry) on the Second Michigan, which was thrown across the road, and after repulsing several charges were not molested further. In this affair we lost 2 officers and 32 men. Two ambulances broke down and were left, the wounded being brought off. These troops of Adams had been at West Point, and had crossed the Tombigbee the day previous at Pickensville. April 7, moved from Romulus to Northport, hearing nothing of the corps. April 8, owing to scarcity of forage at Northport moved twelve miles north on the Byler road, where we remained until the 11th, attempting by various methods to communicate with the corps, or find out its movements from Selma, but without success. Finally I concluded that if the corps had moved at all it was either south or east, as the movement west would have driven Forrest to Demopolis, cleared the country between Tuscaloosa and Marrion, and enabled me to communicate beyond doubt. I determined, therefore, to recross the Warrior into Elyton Valley, by which I should certainly learn whether Montgomery