Greasy Cove, Jackson Co., Ala., December 19, 1863.
On examination of my pockets this morning, I find a letter I wrote you a week since. Will mail it this morning and tell you the late news in another dispatch. You notice we have again changed our camp, and you’ll probably admire the classic names they have given these beautiful valleys. I was at Stephenson and Bridgeport a few days since for our camp and garrison equipage, and was just starting back with it when I heard that our detachment was ordered to report to the rest of the brigade at their camp at Athens, Tenn., 40 miles beyond Chattanooga. So I left my traps and came back to move. We will start as soon as our parties get in from scouting. The last party that went out and returned was some 200 strong. Dorrance had 20 men from our detachment. They brought in a splendid lot of horses, but had to go 75 miles for them. The guerrillas killed one man of the party, (46th Ohio) and captured a number, maybe 15. Picked them up one, two or three at a time. Dorrance was captured and paroled by some of Forrest’s men. He was pretty well treated, but the parole amounts to nothing. They took nearly all of his money, his arms, spurs, horse, etc. He was the only one of my men captured. It is confounded cold lately and I haven’t been real dry for three days. We have to swim creeks to go anywhere, and there is so much brush and drift in these streams that a horse will always get tangled and souse a fellow. I swam a horse across a creek yesterday, and he went over on his hind legs standing straight up. I never saw such a brute. Rumor says we will be dismounted and go with the corps to Mobile. But the most probable story is that we are going into camp at Athens for the winter. Would much rather go to Mobile but think that we can’t be spared from here.