In the Field, August 31, 1864-6 a. m.
General O. O. HOWARD:
I have yours of 3 a. m. I am satisfied you have as many men as can operate at that point now. Let Kilpatrick reach well to the right, break the telegraph and take up a few rails, but I want you to get possession and fortify some one point of the road itself anywhere near Jonesborough. Davis is all ready with his whole corps to move to your assistance, and I will order him to feel forward toward a point north of Jonesborough. As soon as Schofield gets up I will put him and Stanley toward Rough and Ready, and Garrard’s cavalry down toward Fayetteville. We must have that road, and it is worth to us a heavy battle, and make good all the ground you have, and if your guns command any reach of the road it will be a great gain, but we want the road itself. Keep me fully advised, and I will see that you are supported either by direct help or by auxiliary attacks above and below you, but understand that my hope of success rests mainly with you. I am in the dead certainty of having heavy masses in close support, which are soon to be intrenched. Let your trains come down well, close to your bridge, and I will move a division of Davis’ to the forks-Renfroe’s-to cover that point.