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Doc. 54.-fight near Dandridge, Tenn.

camp near Strawberry Plains, East-Tennessee, January 19.
Wood's division of Granger's corps drove the rebel cavalry out of Dandridge January fifteenth; Sheridan's division came up the sixteenth. There was sharp skirmishing the evening of the sixteenth, but the enemy was driven back. There was a tough fight Sunday, lasting from three o'clock P. M. till dark. La Grange's brigade of cavalry, One Hundred and Twenty-fifth, Ninety-third, and First Ohio infantry--One Hundred and Twenty-fifth commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Moore, Ninety-third and First by the major of the Ninety-third--were the forces chiefly engaged [339] on our part. The infantry regiments were on picket; and the forces in the order from left to right as named above.

In addition to this a section of a battery was posted on a hill in rear of the One Hundred and Twenty-fifth. The rebels came on in strong force, five to one. The cavalry videttes were soon driven in; then the infantry outposts, supported by the outpost reserves, were hotly engaged; and finally, and indeed very soon, the grand reserves went in, and the fight became general and severe. Our troops fought desperately, especially the infantry. The outposts, as skirmishers, excelled praise. Captain Bates, of the One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Ohio, commanding skirmishers on the right of that regiment, made a charge, and, gallantly supported by the Ninety-third and the First on his right, drove the rebs nearly a quarter of a mile back, clear to their main body. Infantry skirmishers on the left also fought most stubbornly; but the cavalry being driven back, they were flanked and forced back to the grand reserve. In the open ground, looking tip the road to Bull's Gap, was a semi-circular depression, a sort of natural rifle-pit, in which the One Hundred and Twenty-fifth, grand reserve, had been posted. This proved to be the key to the whole position. The men fired by volley, and were only exposed as they rose up to deliver their fire. The ground not only sheltered them, but concealed their strength from the enemy, who tried by artillery, infantry, and sharp-shooters posted in tree-tops to dislodge them. And, though flanked on the right and left, they--“Tigers” General Wood named them at Mission Ridge, and they deserve the name — held their ground till dark, and then retired across a ravine, and took up a new position, from which they poured in a volley, which ended the progress of the rebels for that day. There they remained, until Colonel Garrard, with his splendid regiment, dismounted, advanced, and occupied the ground. The regiment was then, by order of Colonel Garrard, posted on the crest of the hill next in rear, where it was relieved near midnight by the Fifteenth Wisconsin.

The stubborn fighting of the infantry alone saved the town from capture, and, perhaps, the entire command from defeat, for preparations for retreat had been going on all day, and the troops engaged were not reenforced for fear of bringing on a general engagement, for which we were not ready. The retreat was made over two routes, our forces falling back across the Holston to Strawberry Plains.

Newmarket was occupied by the rebels yesterday. The forces here are ready for any emergency, and expect an attack from Longstreet, who has been heavily reenforced. Still, if the enemy is as strong as reported, you need not be surprised to hear of us next at Knoxville.


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