HDQRS. THIRD DIVISION, FIFTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Cartersville, August 14, 1864.
Major- General SHERMAN:
A drove of cattle was this a. m. captured together with escort. Have sent out all available cavalry and 300 infantry. Commanding officer at Adairsville telegraphs 6 p. m.-
That a captured prisoner reports the force to consist of 6,000 men under General Wheeler, with ten pieces of artillery, and that the party capturing the cattle were 2,000 strong, with two pieces artillery, and that their main force is pushing still farther north.
I cannot get any believable information, but do not think there is more than 1,000 or 1,500. I understand further that the telegraph operators at Resaca and Calhoun heard a message from a colonel at Dalton to General Steedman, stating that the rebels had demanded the surrender of that place.
JNO. E. SMITH,
(Copy forwarded by General Sherman to Generals Thomas, Howard, and Schofield.)
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, near Atlanta, August 14, 1864.
General J. E. SMITH:
If Wheeler has passed north, look well to the security of the Etowah bridge and Allatoona. Have as strong a force collected as possible, and watch to catch parties on their return. General Steedman has force enough. In an emergency like this, you can call on the force at Rome, which is not on the main line, and therefore not essential.
W. T. SHERMAN,
Major- General, Commanding.