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[454] road, near Seymour, to burn two bridges, a depot, and destroy the track for two miles, which was effected in an incredibly short time. Then taking the road to Lexington, after riding all night, reached that point at daylight, capturing a number of supplies, and destroying during the night the depot and track at Vienna, on the Jeffersonville and Indianapolis Railroad. Leaving Lexington, passed on north to the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad, near Vernon, where, finding General Manson with a heavy force of infantry, we skirmished with him two hours as a feint, while the main command moved round the town to Dupont, where squads were sent out to cut the roads between Vernon and Seymour on the west, Vernon and Laurenceburgh on the east, Vernon and Madison on the south, and Vernon and Columbus on the north. Not much brighter were the bonfires and illuminations in celebration of the Vicksburgh victory by the Yankees than our counter illuminations around Vernon. Many old ladies were aroused from their slumbers to rejoice over the brilliant victories recently achieved. Surmises were various and many. One old lady knew that the city of Richmond was on fire; another that Jeff Davis had been killed; a third that the army of Virginia was used up. Not one knew that General John H. was within two hundred miles of them. Daylight brought the news, and then for miles houses were found vacant. Loaves of bread and buckets of pure, fresh water, with an occasional sprinkle of wines, liquors, and sweetmeats, were thrust upon us. Terror was depicted upon every countenance, until a brief conversation assured them that we were not warring upon women and children. Then their natural effrontery would return, and their vials of uncorked wrath would pour upon us streams as muddy as if emanating from old Abe's brain. From Vernon we proceeded to Versailles, capturing five hundred militia there and gathering on the road. Near this point, Captain P----, a Presbyterian chaplain and former line officer in one of our regiments, actuated by a laudable desire to change steeds, moved ahead, flanking the advance, and running upon a full company of State militia. Imitating his commander's demeanor, he boldly rode up to the company and inquired for the captain. Being informed that there was a dispute as to who should lead them, he volunteered his services, expatiating largely upon the part he had played as an Indiana captain at Shiloh, and was soon elected to lead the valiant hoosiers against the “invading rebs.” Twenty minutes spent in drilling inspired complete confidence; and when the advance-guard of Morgan's command had passed without Captain P----permitting the hoosiers to fire, he ordered them into the road, and surrendered them to our command. Crestfallen, indeed, were the Yanks; but General Morgan, treating them kindly, returning to them their guns, advised them to go home and not come hunting such game again, as they had every thing to lose and nothing to gain by it.

From Versailles we moved without interruption across. to Harrison, Ohio, destroying the track and burning small bridges on the Lawrenceburgh and Indianapolis Railroad. At Harrison we burned a fine bridge. Leaving Harrison at dusk with noiseless tread, we moved around Cincinnati, passing between that city and Hamilton, destroying the railroad, and a scout running the Federal pickets into the city, the whole command marched within seven miles of it. Daylight of the fourteenth found us eighteen miles east of Cincinnati. Sunset had left us twenty-two miles west, but the circuitous route we travelled was not less than one hundred miles. During this night's march many of our men, from excessive fatigue, were riding along fast asleep. Indeed, hundreds would have been left asleep on the road, had it not been for the untiring vigilance of our gallant General. Up, and down the line he rode, laughing with this one, joking with that, assuming a fierce demeanor with another, and so on. None were left, and when we reached the railroad near Camp Dennison, few persons would have guessed the fatigue the men had undergone from their fresh and rosy appearance. A fight was imminent. Madame Rumor had been whispering that old Granny Burnside would pay us a visit that morning, but instead of arriving he sent us a train of cars with several of his officers, who were kindly received, and in honor of their arrival a grand fire was made of the cars, etc. Nothing of special importance occurred after passing Dennison, except at Camp Shady the destruction of seventy-five army-wagons, and a vast amount of forage, until the morning of the nineteenth our command had heavy marches over bad roads. Making detours, threatening both Chillicothe and Hillsboro, on the north, and Gallipolis on the south. Daily were we delayed by the annoying cry of “Axes to the front,” a cry that warned us of bushwhackers, ambuscades, and blockaded-roads. From the fourteenth to the nine-teenth every hillside contained an enemy, and every ravine a blockade. Dispirited and worn down, we reached the river at three A. M., on the nineteenth, at a ford above Pomroy, I think, called Portland. At four, two companies were thrown across the river, and were instantly opened upon by the enemy; a scout of three hundred men were sent down the river a half-mile, who reported back that they had found a small force behind rifle-pits, and asked permission of General Meade to charge. He assented, and by five he was notified that Colonel Smith had successfully charged the pits, capturing one hundred and fifty prisoners. Another courier arriving about the same time reported that a gunboat had approached near our battery, and on being fired upon had retired precipitately.

General Morgan finding both of these reports correct, and believing that he had sufficient time to cross the command, was using every exertion to accomplish the task, when simultaneously could be heard the discharge of artillery from down the river — a heavy, drumming sound of small arms in the rear and right, from the banks

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