On January 16, Brig. Gen.Samuel D. Sturgis, commanding the Cavalry Corps, Army of the Ohio, rode forward from Dandridge along the Morristown Road (now Valley Home Rd., State Hwy 66) to occupy Kimbrough's Crossroads. As the Union cavalry neared the crossroads, they discovered and engaged one of Longstreet's infantrybrigades with artillery that had arrived the day before. The brigade was composed of Alabama troops as well as others and was under the command of Brigadier General Micah Jenkins, a South Carolinian. At the same time Union cavalry under the command of Col. Frank Wolford engaged Confederate forces south and east of Dandridge on the bend of Chucky Road. The Union cavalry could not dislodge the Confederate troops and were compelled to retire to Dandridge.
Around noon on January 17, Sturgis received information that the Confederates were preparing for an attack, so he formed his men into lines of battle. About 4:00 p.m., the Confederates advanced towards Dandridge and the battle quickly turned to general fighting. The battle continued until after dark with the Union forces occupying roughly the same battle line as when the fighting started. Having failed to cross the river to the opposite bank, and fearing that Longstreet's entire force was in front of them, General Parke ordered the Federals to retreat to New Market and Strawberry Plains during the night. The Confederates pursued, but due to the lack of cannons, ammunition, and shoes, broke off and fell back to Dandridge. For the time being, the Union forces left the area.