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[629] the meantime I pressed the passage of the ford to the utmost.

This show of force caused a delay in the advance of the enemy, who had no idea of the number of my men, and probably greatly overrated my strength, and gave me time to pass the ford with infantry, artillery, and baggage wagons. The horses of my cavalry being sent back from ( the other side of the Cumberland River, to carry over the infantry regiments, it was time to retreat. The enemy attacked our rear, but was kept at bay by the two regiments before specified, aided by four guns I had previously ordered to be placed in position on the south side of the Cumberland, looking forward to what was now taking place. The banks of the river, on both sides, are precipitous, and the stream breast deep, but our retreat was effected in excellent order. We lost not a man, except three badly wounded, that I was reluctantly forced to leave behind. Cavalry, infantry, guns, and baggage train safely crossed, with the exception of four wagons which had been sent by another route, and which are still safely hidden in the woods, according to accounts received to-day.

In justice to my brave command, I would respectfully bring to the notice of the General commanding, the names of those officers who contributed, by their undaunted bravery and soldier-like conduct, to the brilliant success which crowned the efforts of the Confederate arms.

To Colonel Hunt, of the Ninth Kentucky, commanding the infantry, I am deeply indebted for his valuable assistance. His conduct, and that of his brave regiment, was perfect, and their steadiness under fire remarkable.

The Second Kentucky also behaved most gallantly and suffered severely--sixty-two men killed and wounded, three regimental officers left dead on the field, sufficiently testified to their share in the fight, and the resistance they had to encounter.

Colonel Clarke's regiment paid also a high price for its devotion. It went into the field two hundred and thirty strong, had six officers, with twenty-one non-commissioned officers and privates killed and wounded, besides six missing.

Colonel Duke, commanding the cavalry, was, as he always has been, “the right man in the right place.” Wise in council, gallant in the field, his services have ever been invaluable to me.

I was informed by my Adjutant-General that Colonel Bennett, in the execution of the special service confided to him, and in which he so entirely succeeded, gave proofs of great gallantry and contempt of danger.

I owe much to my personal staff. Major Llewellyn, Captains Charlton Morgan and Williams, and Lieutenant Tyler, acting as my Aides-de-Camp, gave proof of great devotion, being everywhere in the hottest fire, and Major Llewellyn received the sword of Colonel Stewart, and the surrender of his regiment. Captain Morgan and Captain Williams' horses were killed under them, and Lieutenant Tyler was severely wounded. My Orderly Sergeant, Craven Peyton, received a shot in his hip, and had his horse killed by my side.

I must have forgiveness if I add, with a soldier's pride, that the conduct of my whole command deserved my highest gratitude and commendation.

Three Federal regimental standards and five cavalry guidons fluttered over my brave column on their return from the expedition. With such troops victory is enchained to our banners, and the issue of a contest with our Northern opponents, even when they are double our force, no longer doubtful.

I have the honor to be, sir,

With the highest respect,

Your most obedient servant,

John H. Morgan, Brigadier-General.

Report of Major-General Breckinridge.

headquarters Breckinridge's division, December 11, 1862.
Major Thos. M. Jack, A. A. General:
Sir: I have the honor to forward a report from Colonel R. W. Hanson, commanding First brigade of my division, covering the report of Colonel Thos. H. Hunt, who commanded the Second and Ninth Kentucky regiments and Cobb's battery, in the recent expedition (under command of Brigadier-General Morgan) against Hartsville; and also, the reports of Major Hewitt and Captain Morehead, commanding, respectively, the Second and Ninth Kentucky, and of Captain Cobb, commanding the battery.

I beg to call attention to the officers and men specially named for gallantry, and to suggest, respectfully, that the troops engaged in this expedition deserve mention in orders for conduct, which, in fortitude and daring, has not been surpassed during the war.

Very respectfully,

John C. Breckinridge, Major-General, commanding.

Report of Colonel R. W. Hanson.

headquarters First brigade, camp near Murfreesboro, December 11, 1862.
Colonel Buckner, Assistant Adjutant-General:
In pursuance of the order of General Bragg, I proceeded, with my command, on the fifth instant, to Baird's Mill, and remained two days, making, as directed, reconnaissance towards Nashville. General Morgan designated the Second and Ninth Kentucky and Cobb's battery as the troops he desired to accompany him upon the Hartsville expedition. They were detached under command of Colonel Hunt. I enclose, herewith, his report of the battle of Hartsville, and the reports of his subordinate officers. I wish to call attention to the honorable mention that is made in Major Hewitt's and Colonel Hunt's reports of the gallant conduct of Sergeant Oldham, of the Second Kentucky regiment, with the hope that the proper steps may be taken to procure for him the proper reward of his conduct.

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