In April 1862 General Mitchell and General Buell tasked 22 volunteers (including 2 civilians) under the leadership of James Andrews, with a daring raid. The men, later known as "Andrews' Raiders" penetrated 200 miles into enemy territory to capture a railroad train at Big Shanty, Georgia. Their mission was to destroy vital railroad lines and bridges between Chattanooga and Atlanta to disrupt movement of Confederate soldiers and supplies. Only partially successful, their capture of the locomotive "The General" resulted in a nearly 100 mile race that became known as "The Great Locomotive Chase". Corporal Smith was one of these raiders, traveling in small groups for four days to reach Big Shanty. En route, near Jasper, TN Private Smith and fellow would-be raider Corporal Samuel Llewellyn were stopped by Confederate soldiers and questioned. They gave the cover story, previously proffered by Andrews, that they were attempting to find and join a Confederate unit. They were promptly enlisted in the Confederate Army, neither having opportunity to participate in the raid. Smith was subsequently awarded the Medal of Honor, but for whatever reason, Cpl Llewellyn did not receive the award.
With the exception of William Pittenger, all of the survivors of the Andrews raiding party were still in service at the end of 1863. Several had taken part in the Battle of Chickamauga and had gone through the adventure of a second capture and imprisonment by the Confederates. A few would serve until 1865, but during the months of 1864, many of them left the service; some for disabilities and others for expiration of terms of enlistment.