War of the Rebellion: Serial 003 Page 0661 Chapter X. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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HEADQUARTERS SECOND BRIGADE,

New Madrid, Mo., August 18, 1861.

Major G. A. HENRY, Assistant Adjutant-General:

In accordance with instructions from General Pillow, I made a reconnaissance of Island Numbers 10 and the left bank of the Mississippi. I have only reiterate what I formerly said on the subject to Governor Harris and General Pillow, viz: That Island Numbers 10, as the center of the line, the right at Union City and the left near Chalk Bluff, is the strongest position for the defense of the Mississippi Valley. If I had time I would demonstrate this fact.

Yours, &c.,

J. P. MCCOWN,

Colonel Artillery, Commanding Brigade.

CAMP BENTON, MO., August 18, 1861.

To the OFFICER IN COMMAND AT CAMP SIKESTON, MO.:

SIR: I am going to-night, with a gun, to take a position on the Mississippi River and fire into some passing steamboats, to make them believe we are cutting off Cairo. I would like a demonstration made on Bird's Point or a rumor of one sent in. I would prefer the demonstration; that is, drive in their picket sand keep them in until the movement of General Pillow up to Sikeston or this point is completely covered. I am make no other suggestions, as I do not know who is in command by this time. If only my own men, have a consultation and show your talent.

M. JEFF. THOMPSON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

CAMP BENTON, MO., August 18, 1861.

Brigadier GENERAL GIDEON J. PILLOW, C. S. A., New Madrid, Mo.:

DEAR GENERAL: I will cover your whole plan of operations to-night by making a demonstration on Commerce, and to-morrow by making one on Bird's Point. The enemy has come to the conclusion that all of our attention has been drawn away from Bird's Point and Cairo and is being directed upon Cape Girardeau and Saint Louis. I will go to-night with the Mississippi Cavalry and one gun to some favorable hill, near Commerce, and drop a shot into some passing steamboats, and, if you will allow a demonstration to-morrow on Bird's Point, a new campaign will be opened or the other covered up. I will direct a part of the force I left at Sikeston to move towards Bird's Point, and if one of your regiments would help, you might carry the place. After this demonstration to-night, which I hope will cove our whole movement, I will remain quiet until you move up.

Yours, most respectfully,

M. JEFF. THOMPSON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

CAMP BENTON, MO., August 18, 1861.

Brigadier General GEDEON J. PILLOW, C. S. A.,

Commanding Army of Liberation, New Madrid, Mo.:

DEAR GENERAL: Yours of yesterday, containing dispatches from General Hardee, is at hand. The dispatch will be forwarded immediately.