placed Colonel Cook in command, with directions to remain at Jackson until further orders. I propose ordering General McClernand to that command if not prohibited.
Thirty thousand rations were sent to Jackson last night and this morning. I will forward by to-morrow's mail a copy of all orders issued to General Prentiss, together with charges.
U. S. GRANT,
Major General JOHN C. FREMONT,
Commanding Western Department, Saint Louis, Mo.
HEADQUARTERS U. S. FORCES,
Cape Girardeau, Mo., September 2, 1861.
Colonel JOHN COOK, Seventh Illinois Volunteers:
General Prentiss having placed himself under arrest by his own order, the command of the column at Jackson necessarily devolves upon the senior colonel with it. The general commanding having no official notice of the relative rank of officers, will assume that they are arranged according to the numerical order of the regiments which they command, colonels from different States taking rank according to date of commission, when they have been issued. When they have not, according to the date of being sworn into the United States service. It is assumed, therefore, that Colonel Cook, Seventh Regiment Illinois Volunteers, is the senior, and the command will devolve upon you. You will at once assume command. Hold the troops at Jackson for further orders, and make requisitions for one more day's rations from this place and get them out to camp.
The regiment under Colonel C. C. Marsh, Twentieth Illinois Volunteers, is to accompany the expedition when it moves. He will therefore be directed to send back all his surplus baggage to this place for shipment by river. Transportation being so limited, nothing will be taken not strictly required.
U. S. GRANT,
HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
Saint Louis, Mo., September 3, 1861.
Brigadier-General GRANT, Cairo, Ill.:
According to intelligence received by me the enemy has left Benton, but, if your own means of information are not more reliable than mine, you will still direct the forces at Jackson to move with all precaution sending scouts along the road as they advance. Should Benton be still occupied by the enemy, they are to make an attack, annihilate him, and take possession of the place. With the same precautions you will proceed from Bird's Point and cause Colonel Waagner to advance with his force from Belmont towards Charleston and occupy that place. From Charleston you are immediately to open a direct communication with Benton, and from the information you gain at those places you will determine whether a united attack would prove advantageous to our forces. Should you regard an attack advisable, you will leave an adequate reserve on both lines.
The united force of the enemy at Sikeston is estimated at 16,000,