The Little Tennessee River is too deep to ford and we must construct a bridge. General Wilson who accompanied me undertook to superintend the bridge, and I am under many obligations to him. I am without an engineer, having sent Captain Jenny back from Graysville to survey our field of battle. We have pioneers, but only such tools as axes, picks, and spades. General Wilson, working partly with cut wood and partly with square trestles (made of the houses of the late town of Morgantown), progressed apace. By dark our troops and animals were crossing over the bridge.
I have ordered General Granger to push his troops across the bridge.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
Near Morganton, December 4, 1863
Commanding Fourth Army Corps:
The general commanding directs that you move your command in such time that the leading division shall occupy the bridge at early dawn.
General Howard will cross his troops at Davis’ Ford, which will give you the bridge here at the early moment specified.
Loaded wagons must not pass the bridge until all troops are crossed with two horses can pass with their respective commands.
Very respectfully, yours, &c.
L. M. DAYTON, Captain and Aide-de-Camp