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[482] his troops, remained in Middle Kentucky long after Bragg's retreat. On the 17th of October, nine days after the battle of Perryville, he was still in the neighborhood of Lexington, with three thousand cavalry and six field-pieces, and repulsed the attacks of a small body of Federal troops which had imprudently advanced in that direction. The next day, another detachment of about three hundred mounted men having also ventured within his reach, Morgan surprised it, captured the entire force, and did not hesitate to suddenly enter the town of Lexington itself. After remaining in possession of the place for a few hours, instead of retiring eastward or southward, he took the direct route to the west, and marched upon Versailles. At this point he divided his force in order the more easily to avoid the Federals. A portion of his cavalry proceeded south-eastward by way of Richmond and Mount Vernon. On the 23d of October, the day when Bragg was passing from Kentucky into Tennessee, these troops were attacked by Colonel McCook at the pass of Big Hill, and left a considerable number of prisoners in the hands of the Federals. On the following day, the 24th, we find another detachment at the other end of the State forcing the passage of Green River at Morgantown after a brief engagement.

For fifteen days Morgan disappeared from the scene of action. He had been assembling his men in the valley of the Cumberland, and had rallied around him the numerous partisans who were masters of that region since the 1st of October, when they had routed a Federal detachment commanded by Colonel Stokes at Gallatin, Tennessee. He was not, however, to remain long inactive. The Confederates, responding to the appeal of the population of Nashville, which was ardently secessionist, had conceived the idea of taking the garrison of that city by surprise, while Buell was not within reach to succor it. In the early part of October Anderson's brigade had already made some demonstration in that direction for the purpose of feeling the enemy; but General Palmer, who had remained at Nashville with his brigade and that of Negley, attacked Anderson on the 7th of October at Lavergne, and compelled him to retire. Shortly after, Forrest reappeared in the neighborhood, destroying all the ways of communication which might at any time be of service to the Federals,

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