War of the Rebellion: Serial 003 Page 0478 OPERATIONS IN MO., AKR., KANS., AND IND. T. Chapter X.

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benefit any of the ordinary advantages which the usages of war allow to us. As promptitude is itself an advantage in war, I have also to ask that you will permit me to carry out upon the spot the provisions of the proclamation in this respect. Looking at affairs from this point of view, I am satisfied that strong and vigorous measures have now become necessary to the success of our arms; and hoping that my views may have the honor to meet your approval,

I am, with respect and regard, very truly, yours,



September 8, 1861.


MY DEAR SIR: I send by another hand what I ask you to consider in respect to the subject of the note by your special messenger.

In this I desire to ask you attention to the position of affairs in Kentucky. As the rebel troops driven out from Missouri had invaded Kentucky in considerable force, and by occupying Union City, Hickman, and Columbus were preparing to seize Paducah and attack Cairo, I judged it impossible, without losing important advantages, to defer any longer a forward movement. For this purpose I have drawn from the Missouri side a part of the force which had been stationed at Bird's Point, Cairo, and Cape Girardeau, to Fort Holt and Paducah, of which places we have taken possession. As the rebel forces outnumber ours, and the counties of Kentucky between the Mississippi and Tennessee Rivers, as well as those along the latter and the Cumberland, are strongly secessionist, it becomes imperatively necessary to have the co-operation of the loyal Union forces under General Anderson and Nelson, as well as of those already encamped opposite Louisville, under Colonel Rousseau.

I have re-enforced, yesterday, Paducah with two regiments, and will continue to strengthen the position with men and artillery. As soon as General Smith, who commands there, is re-enforced sufficiently to enable him to spread his forces, he will have to take and hold Mayfield and Lovelaceville, to be in the rear and flank of Columbus, and to occupy Smithland, controlling in this way the mouths of both the Tennessee and the Cumberland Rivers. At the same time, Colonel Rousseau should bring his force, increased, if possible, by two Ohio Regiments, in boats to Henderson, and, taking the Henderson and Nashville Railroad, occupy Hopkinsville, while General Nelson should go with a force of 5,000 by railroad to Louisville and from there to Bowling Green.

As the population in all the counties through which the above railroads pass are loyal, this movement could be made without delay or molestation to the troops.

Meanwhile General Grant would take possession of the entire Cairo and Fulton Railroad, Piketon, New Madrid, and the shore of the Mississippi opposite Hickman and Columbus. The foregoing disposition having been effected, a combined attack will be made upon Columbus, and, if successful in that, upon Hickman, while Rousseau and Nelson will move in concert, by railroad, to Nashville, Tenn., occupying the State capital, and, with an adequate force, New Providence.

The conclusion of this movement would be a combined advance toward Memphis, on the Mississippi, as well as the Memphis and Ohio Railroad, and I trust the result would be a glorious one to the country.