HEADQUARTERS WHARTON’S CAVALRY,
Unionville, March 23, 1863-3.30 p.m.
Lieut. Gen. LEONIDAS POLK,
Commanding at Shelbyville:
GENERAL: Captain [M. L.] Gordon, of my scout, with 15 men from his company and 6 men from Company B, Texas Rangers (my escort), passed to the rear of the enemy last night.
He visited the houses of George Smith, 4 miles from Murfreesborough, Wilkinson pike, and Mr. Hardin, 1½ miles of Triune, on the same pike.
He learned that Rosecrans’ army was still at Murfreesborough; that he has received no re-enforcement lately; that he has fortified all around the town; fortifications from Mr. James’ to Stone’s River, toward Breckinridge’s line, extending on both sides of the river. They have torn down the Murphy house (General Cheatham’s headquarters), and erected fortifications in its stead. Fortifications on Little’s plantation.
McCook’s corps is near Salem; his headquarters at Tom Turner’s, 2 miles from Salem, toward Murfreesborough. They were under arms all Wednesday night, occasioned by Captain Gordon’s attack upon them that evening. They pretend to expect an attack from General Bragg, who, they say, has received large re-enforcements. Yankee officers say, if we want a fight, we will have to come to them.
No truth in reports about demoralization. Officers say conscript law will be enforced.
Couriers to Triune and Franklin do not travel the Wilkinson pike, but go out several miles on the Nashville road, and then turn off. Captain Gordon was within one-half mile of their main camp on Wilkinson pike. He would have attacked it, but thought his presence ought not to be made known, as he might be called upon to go again, in which, I think, he acted wisely.
I have several scouts out, the result of which I will report promptly. I will be in town to-morrow, to see you, if nothing occurs to prevent.
Twenty-three Federal cavalry who would approach the rear of Shelbyville, within 1½ miles of Triune, would be considered bold and daring scouts.
Most respectfully, general, your obedient servant,
JNO. A. WHARTON,
P. S.–I send you a report of General Morgan’s fight at Auburn on the 20th, which you have doubtless had the particulars of.
O.R.– SERIES I–VOLUME XXIII/2 [S# 35]
Correspondence, Orders, And Returns Relating To Operations In Kentucky, Middle And East Tennessee, North Alabama, And Southwest Virginia, From January 21 To August 10, 1863.
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE. ETC.–#4