About eleven o'clock they laid the first ambuscade, but Forrest contrived to discover it in advance and, instead of walking into it, caused us to dismount and get into line and crawl up close to the enemy's position.
It would have made too much noise to have brought up a piece of artillery by horse power so soldiers were harnessed to it and dragged it to a point within two hundred yards of the enemy's line.
When the proper moment arrived, he ordered the cannon to open and the cavalry likewise so that we surprised the enemy instead of them surprising us. I walked along the line where they had been formed and found it littered from end to end with small bits of paper. It looked as if every man in their column must have employed the leisure afforded by that stop to tear up all the private letters found upon his person. It was clear that their alarm had become serious and would help us much if we could keep it up.