War of the Rebellion: Serial 084 Page 0125 Chapter LIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.- UNION.

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HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF WEST MISSISSIPPI,

New Orleans, July 11, 1864.

Major General H. W. SLOCUM,

Commanding District of Vicksburg, Vicksburg, Miss.:

GENERAL: I am directed by the major-general commanding to transmit herewith, inclosed for your information, copy of letter of instructions to Brevet Brigadier-General Bailey, commanding Engineer Brigade, Vicksburg. In consequence of the withdrawal of a large number of troops from this division to the Army of the Potomac, the general commanding deem it more than ever an imperative necessity to make the white troops, subject to his disposal, available for field service, retaining only such a number as are absolutely required to secure the safety of the posts from which they are taken. It is believed that most if not all of the white troops in your command can be spared for such service if replaced by a corresponding number of the 100-days' men now subject to the orders of the commanding general, and you are respectfully requested to state, by the earliest opportunity, what force you will be able, under these conditions, to place at his disposal, and that in the meantime measures be taken to place it in proper state for field service, and hold it ready to embark whenever required.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. T. CHRISTENSEN.

[Inclosure.]

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF WEST MISSISSIPPI,

New Orleans, La., July 11, 1864.

Bvt. Brigadier General BAILEY,

Commanding Engineer Brigade, Vicksburg, Miss.:

GENERAL: I am instructed by the major-general commanding to inform you that a force from Morganza will be collected at the mouth of White River, commanded by Brigadier General George H. Gordon, for the purpose of assisting General Steele in keeping open his line of communication.

It may be possible that this force is deemed insufficient, and in that case General Gordon has been authorized to call you to join him with your brigade at the mouth of White River. Upon notification to that effect you will please to embark your command with all possible dispatch. Should the available transportation at Vicksburg be insufficient, you are authorized to impress the first boats coming up the river, or, if necessary, those coming down, for that purpose.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

C. T. CHRISTENSEN,

Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF WEST MISSISSIPPI,

New Orleans, La., July 11, 1864.

Major General C. C. WASHBURN,

Commanding District of West Tennessee, Memphis, Tenn.:

GENERAL: Your dispatch of the 5th just received.* Presuming that you would not be able to send so large a force as I named to assist General Steele, I have ordered a brigade of infantry and two batteries

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* See Vol. XXXIX, Part II, p. 164.

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