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[433] who represented him at Vicksburg, did not receive the dispatch till it was several days old. Hurlbut promptly put his West Tennessee corps in motion eastward; but this was not enough; and Halleck, on learning of tile reverse on the Chickamauga — hearing nothing from Grant or Sherman — detached1 the 11th and 12th corps from the Army of the Potomac, and ordered them, under Gen. Hooker, to Middle Tennessee, to hold, till further orders, Rosecrans's line of communications from Nashville to Bridgeport. This transfer of 20,000 men, with all their artillery, munitions, and baggage, was made with remarkable celerity, through the extraordinary exertions of Gen. D. C. McCallum, government superintendent of railroads, M. C. Meigs, Quartermaster General, and W. Prescott Smith, master of transportation on the Baltimore and Ohio road: the two corps marching from the Rapidan to Washington, taking cars, and being transported by Cumberland, Wheeling, Cincinnati, Louisville, and Nashville, to the Tennessee, and there debarked in fighting array, within eight days.

Meantime, Bragg had sent a large portion of his cavalry, under Wheeler and Wharton, across2 the Tennessee at Cottonport, between Chattanooga and Bridgeport, instructed to cut our communications and destroy our supplies so far as possible. Wheeler, doubtless thoroughly informed, made directly for a large portion of Gen. Thomas's train of 700 to 1,000 wagons, laden with supplies, then in Sequatchie valley, near Anderson's Cross-roads, which he captured3 and burned; being attacked, directly afterward, by Col. E. M. McCook, who, with three regiments of cavalry, had been ordered from Bridgeport to pursue him. McCook had the better of the fight; but darkness closed it; and the enemy moved off during the night, while McCook had no orders to pursue him.

Wheeler next struck McMinnville, in the heart of Tennessee, which, with 600 men, a train of wagons, and one of cars, was surrendered to him without a struggle, and where he burned a large quantity of supplies. But here he was overhauled by Gen. Geo. Crook, who, with another cavalry division, 2,000 strong, had started from Washington, Tenn., and had for some hours been pursuing and fighting Wharton, and by whose order Col. Long, with the 2d Kentucky, charged the rear of the now flying foe with spirit and effect. Wheeler's force being superior, he halted and fought dismounted till dark, and then struck out for Murfreesboroa; but that post was firmly held, and he could not wait to carry it; so he swept down to Warren and Shelbyville, burning bridges, breaking the railroad, and capturing trains and stores, taking thence a southwest course across Duck river to Farmington, where another fight4 was had, and the Rebels worsted by the fire of Capt. Stokes's battery, followed by a charge of infantry, and lost 4 guns, captured by Crook, though lie was in inferior force. Wheeler got away during the night to Pulaski, and thence into North Alabama; making his escape across the Tennessee river, near the mouth of Elk; losing 2 more guns and his rear-guard of 70 men in getting over. Gens. Thomas and

1 Sept. 23.

2 Sept. 30.

3 Oct. 2.

4 Oct. 7.

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