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172 Series I Volume XLV-I Serial 93 - Franklin - Nashville Part I

Page 172 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter LVII.

(Third) now going in camp. 4 p. m., we have marched seventeen miles and a half, and bridged Sugar Creek and all of the small creeks running across the road on our line of march, since 7 a. m. It is not yet determined at what ford we will cross Elk River; it depends on the condition of the river-whether it is fordable. If the river cannot be forded, and we cannot build a bridge over it for the passage of infantry, artillery, and our trains, in less than three days, we will march to Huntville, via Fayettevile, at which latter point is a good bridge over the Elk. By taking this route we must make quite a detour; going thirty-five miles out of the way. Colonel Greenwood, assistant inspector-general of the corps, has gone to Grigsby's Frod to see whether the river is fordable at that point-this is, the lower ford. Buck Island Ford is the one on our direct road, and Legg's Ford is a few miles farther up the river. 8 a. m., Lieutenant-Colonel Greenwood has just returned, and reports that the river cannot be forded at Grigsby's; if not, it is not fordable at Buck Island. A reconnoitering party will be sent to Legg's Ford, at daylight in the morning, to examine it, and the corps will not move from camp until its report is received. If the corps moves to this ford ad we there find we cannot cross it or bridge it within three days, it would have to march back to Sugar Creek to take the Fayetteville road. The day has been very bright, but cold; it has been freezing all day. 10 p. m., General Elliott has not yet reported the position of his division. It is not know at corps headquarters where he camps to-night.


January 1, 1865.-6 a. m., Lieutenant-Colonel Greenwood and party starts to Legg's Ford to examine the condition of the river at that point. 9 a. m., General Elliott camped about fire miles from Sugard Creek last night, and has just reached the creek. 10 a. m., Colonel Greenwood reports that none of the fords of Elk River can be crossed with wagons or artillery; that the water is not less that six feet deep. 10.30 a. m., ordered Colonel Suman and Major Watson (both of the Firs Division) to construct a good strong wagon bridge over the Elk at Buck Island Ford for the passage of the corps. All of the pioneers of the corps are instructed to report to them for duty in building the bridge. Colonel Suman says that he will build the bridge by noon on the 3rd instant, and that it cannot possibly be built sooner. 11 a. m., ordered Generals Kimball and Beatty to move their divisions to the vicinity of Buck Island Ford, and for them to render Colonel Suman any assistance he may call for, and ordered General Elliott to move his division to Mount Rozell, about two miles this side of Sugar Creek. 12 m., division commanders directed to send foraging parties out from each brigade to forage the country for subsistence and to seize mills and grind corn for their troops. 3 p. m., Colonel Suman and Major Watson commence work on the bridge. There will be some difficulty in constructing it, as the stream is too deep to ford, is very swift, no boats can be procured, and it is about 325 feet wide. The only tools that can be found to work with are axes, a few saws, and two or three agues; have no nails or spikes. It might be a saving of time to march to Huntsville, via Fayetteville, thirty-four miles out of the way, but too many of the men are barefooted or too nearly so to march such a long distance. There is a good stone bridge over the Elk at Fayetteville. We move headquarters to Elk River, near the bridge. The weather moderated much to-day and it is growing quite warm.

Page 172 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter LVII.