HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE OHIO,
Cincinnati, June 12, 1861.
Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General:
COLONEL: I have the honor to inclose for the information of the General-in-Chief a letter from the Honorable Garrett Davis.
I leave this afternoon for Cairo. In the mean time I have started all the preparations for an expedition to gain possession of the Kanawha Valley, which will probably be the end of the secession cause in that region.
I have directed Major Marrey to make a careful inspection of those Illinois regiments which I will not see en route to Cairo.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. B. MCCLELLAN,
Major-General, U. A. Army,
PARIS, KY., April [June?] 8, 1861.
General GEORGE B. MCCLELLAN:
DEAR SIR: It will probably be unnecessary and superfluous, but still I feel impelled to address you this note:
An intelligent friend was with me last evening who had left the State of Mississippi three days before, and traveled through a section of Tennessee and from Nashville to Louisville by the railroad. He informed me that the insurgents claimed to have eight thousand troops at Corinth, in Mississippi, and about twenty thousand along the railroad between Nashville and the Kentucky line and along that line. He understood from an officer high in command in one of their camps that there was a perfect understanding between their leaders and our governor that if Colonel Anderson moved with any troops to Louisville or the authorities of the United States proceeded to take possession of Louisville and of the railroad, or to violate the neutrality of Kentucky as laid down in the governor's proclamation, the Tennesseeans had his express permission to take possession of the road in Kentucky and also of Louisville, and that they, with the secessionists in that part of Kentucky, would advance upon Louisville with twenty thousand troops.
My informant further said that the same officer had disclosed to him this as the general plan of the campaign by the Confederate leaders in Virginia: Beauregard was to make a movement on Alexandria and a feint attack on Mansfield's lines, and then fall rapidly back on the interior of Virginia, with a view to draw Mansfield after him in rapid pursuit, and in this way he was to be drawn deeply in the pursuit, when all the Confederate forces that could in the interval be assembled in Virginia and all that could be got together in that State were to move rapidly upon him, intercept his retreat, and capture or annihilate his army. The gentleman told me that the whole Southern people were animated by the most intense hatred against the Northern States and Lincoln's administration, and felt the greatest confidence that their forces would be victorious wherever they fought on anything like equal terms. He also expressed his own belief that the Southern men had much greater skill in the use of small-arms, superiority in horsemanship, and were more alert and spirited than Northern men, and that when they were anything like equal in numbers they would be victorious, especially in the early battles.