War of the Rebellion: Serial 109 Page 0492 SW. VA., KY., TENN., MISS., ALA., W. FLA., & N. GA. Chapter LXIV.

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KNOXVILLE, November 6, 1863.

General WILLCOX:

Move your force as rapidly as possible, without breaking it down, in direction of Morristown by way of Bull's Gan. I have ordered Colonel Harney to put his men in position on the hill above Morristown in support of his battery, and to hold the place until you arrive. General Shackelford should keep his force well in advance, and if he arrives in contact with the enemy should leave no stone unturned to meet him and scatter them. You will [see] the importance of making this move rapidly but in compact form. Please notify the North Carolina troops, and such other organizations, of this move with you, and take your operator with you and communicate with me by telegraph. At such times as your strike the line you can send in cipher. Telegraph me before you start, in cipher.

A. E. BURNSIDE,

[31.] Major-General.

KNOXVILLE, November 6, 1863.

General WILLCOX:

Please give me you views as to the force absolutely necessary to hold points above Morristown, with a view to protecting the road and telegraph lines from Cumberland Gap, and points [which] should be held. Important that we should have all the forde posisble sent in this direction, and it is of cavalry here soon. Have you a cipher; and if so, which one?

A. E. BURNSIDE,

[31.] Major-General.

HENDERSON'S, November 6, 1863.

General O. B. WILLCOX:

Your dispatch requesting any views in relation to the force absolutely necessary to hold points above Morristown, points to be held, &c., is received. I am to the opinion that the rebels have not exceeding 3,500 mounted men and probably that number of infantry, including their home guards. Their infantry, in my judgment, will not corss the rivers this winter. If the object is simply to protect the trains and telegraph lines from Cumberland Gap to Knoxville, Bull's Gap would be, in my judgment, sufficiently high to come up the road; but if the purpose be to hold the country, or the purpose forage, I would advise the holding of the country farther up. Of course these opinions are given in utter ignorance of state of things below, which might modify or entirely change them. I have heard nothing from the direction of Regersville.

J. M. SHACKELFORD,

[31.] Brigadier-General.

LITTLE CREEK BRIDGE,

November 6, 1863-5 p. m.

General O. B. WILLCOX:

SIR: I arrived at the depot at Bull's Gap at 4 p. m., and found Lieutenant Davis, One hundred and sixteenth Indiana Volunteers, evacuating with the intention of falling back to the bridge. From 300 to 500