The Progress from Cairo.


No Pickets out from Columbus.

CAIRO, Jan. 18.

The progress of the army has been much retarded by the heavy rain which fell last night and this morning, rendering the roads very heavy.


Advices from below bring intelligence of a fight on the Tennessee at Fort Henry, which is located on the state line. The dispatches were addressed to Col. Buford, and state that yesterday the gunboats Conestoga and Lexington, co-operating with the land force of Gen. Smith, attacked Fort Henry on the Tennessee river, forty-five miles from Paducah. The rebels were shelled out of their entrenchments and fled. The United States forces now occupy Fort Henry. This movement, as will be seen, enables Gen. Smith to cut off the rebel reinforcements from Columbus to Bowling Green, and thus Gen. Buell's right will be protected.


Some of our forces are at Camp Jefferson yet on the river; others are at Blandville, eight miles distant, and Gen. McClernand's division marched yesterday morning in the direction of Milburne. It was rumored at a late hour in the evening that they had reached the Mobile and Ohio railroad and torn up some of the track. There was no enemy at any position to be attacked yesterday. It will take a day or two for the troops to assemble sufficiently for a united demonstration to any quarter.

Gen. Grant in his reconnoisance had with him about 60 cavalry, and reached the Bend about thirty minutes after a force of 100 rebel cavalry had passed.

Our force was met at the Bend by the steamer Aleck Scott, which brought them up to Fort Jefferson.

The 28th Illinois regiment yesterday made a reconnoisance to within one and a half miles of Columbus, and found the enemy had no pickets out.

Gen. McClernand's column has gone in the vicinity of Mayfield, and various moves will be made by different columns in a day or so.

Col. Buford commanding this post, received a dispatch to-day from Col. Ross, at Cape Girardeau, stating that Captain Murdock and Webster returned last night from an expedition to Bloomfield. It was a complete success, capturing 40 of the enemy, among them one lieutenant, two surgeons, three captains and the adjutant.

Captain Phelps, with the gunboat Conestoga, made a reconnoisance up the Tennessee river to-day, and shelled a point just below Fort Henry, where a masked battery is supposed to be, but he did not succeed in drawing its fire.