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[494] fearing to be caught between the troops of Baird at Danville and those of Hoskins at Lebanon, he suddenly retraced his steps, passed through Hayesville and encamped at Rolling Fork. On the 31st he crossed the Muldraugh Hills, which lie south of Lebanon, and re-entered the valley of Green River. Baird, at Danville, made no effort to meet him; Woolford, at Greensburg, seemed to have no suspicion of his being so near him at Campbellville. Hoskins alone started in pursuit of him with all his forces. He left Lebanon on the 31st, crossed the Muldraugh Hills on the 1st of January, 1863, and after a forced march reached Green River bridge, which the rear-guard of the enemy had just passed on the same evening. On that very day Morgan passed through Columbia and entered the valley of the Cumberland. He was now out of reach of his enemies; and whilst Hoskins halted his exhausted soldiers before Columbia, he quietly proceeded through Jamestown to join the left flank of Bragg's army in the positions which the latter had just taken on Duck River, as will be seen presently. This new expedition was thus accomplished without the least opposition; but it could not have been productive of great results, unless the fortune of war had declared in favor of the Confederates on the battle-field of Murfreesborough. Their retreat, on the contrary, rendered Morgan's raids almost fruitless.

The Federals on their side were determined that their adversaries should not enjoy all the advantages of these incursions, and at last decided to imitate them. General Carter, an intelligent and energetic officer, was directed to organize a raid on the Confederate railroads at the very time when Forrest and Morgan were taking the field. At the beginning of this work we spoke of the great artery which connects the two important centres of Lynchburg and Chattanooga, under the name of the Virginia and East Tennessee Railroad. This railway follows throughout the whole distance one of the small valleys formed by the parallel ridges of the Alleghanies; it was then the only direct communication between Virginia and the slave States of the Southwest, between the capital of the Confederacy and Bragg's army. As this line is separated from the Kentucky districts by several mountain ridges, where the partisans carried on hostilities far

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