July 6, 1864.
I have the honor to report that in compliance with orders received, and also with verbal directions from Major-General Sherman, I proceeded to this point (Hargrove’s house), divided my force, sending one detachment to Powers’ Ferry, and marching with the other to the mouth of Soap Creek, about six miles distant, where there is also a ferry and a bad ford, said by citizens to be almost impracticable. Artillery was opened from the other side of the river on my men at both points, one gun at the upper and two at the lower ferry, without any effect, however, except killing 3 horses. I found a bridge across Soap Creek, three-quarters of a mile from its mouth, burned; the bridge at Roswell Factory has also been burned. The distance between here and there is twelve miles. There is no difficulty in communicating with General Garrard, as there are no rebels on this side of the Chattahoochee. I find this country full of ravines and ridges, tolerably open and well watered, but there is neither grass, wheat, nor other forage on which to subsist stock. The little that was in the vicinity has been exhausted by Wheeler’s force, who has been encamped here, until yesterday morning, for the last five days. I will furnish you with a map of the roads, &c., some time to-morrow. None of the enemy’s trains had passed this way’ they all crossed on bridges below. I forgot to mention that at Powers’ Ferry there is a small boat and wire stretched across. I can get my artillery in position within 500 yards of their battery. This ferry is well watched and guarded. I have pickets also at mouth of Soap Creek, and at Johnson’s Ferry, one mile and a half above that point.
I am, sir, very respectfully,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.
Lieutenant D. F. HOW,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.