Wheeler's "Great Raid."
--The Macon Telegraph
makes the following extract from a private letter from a member of General Wheeler
We are just returning from our grand raid on Sherman
's lines of communication.
The expedition thus far is a most perfect success in every way. We have destroyed effectually some fifty miles of the railroad in Middle Tennessee
, and some twenty-five in East Tennessee
We have captured hundreds of prisoners and an immense amount of United States Government property of every sort.
In every fight we have made with the enemy we have been victorious.
We went within about two miles and a half of Nashville
Our trip throughout Tennessee
was a continuous grand ovation, and has given us some two thousand recruits of most excellent material for cavalry.
The people of Tennessee
are very cheerful, and have the finest crops known for years, which they are very anxious for the brave boys of our gallant army to come and consume.
In the midst of our brilliant successes a cloud of sadness covers the scene, in the case of General Kelley
, who was wounded on the 2d instant, near Franklin
, while arranging his line of battle.
I think the damage we have done the railroads will require at least thirty days to have it repaired.
In the meantime, how is Sherman
to subsist his army!
From the best information we could obtain, twenty days rations was the utmost of his supply.
I can but think General Sherman
's army must retreat — at least to Chattanooga
, if not further.