against it. The gunboats should be supported by mat least one and perhaps two division of your best infantry, taken from Paducah and other points from which they can best be spared. At the same time such a demonstration should be made on Columbus as will prevent the removal of any troops from that place; and, if a sufficient number have already been withdrawn, the place should be taken. It may be well also to make a feint on the Tennessee River, with a command sufficient to prevent disaster under any circumstances.
As our success in Kentucky depends in a great measure on our preventing re-enforcements from joining Buckner and Johnston, not a mo ment's time should be lost in preparing these expeditions.
I desire they you give me at once your views in full as to the best method of accomplishing our object, at the same time stating the nature and strength of the force that you can use for the purpose and the time necessary to prepare.
GEO. B. McCLELLAN,
JANUARY 3, 1862.
General LORENZO THOMAS,
Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:
Two regiments alone could only remain at Caseyville through the inactivity of the superior force of the enemy at Hopkinsville. That is possible; but if it should happen otherwise, it would be inconvenient to re-enforce them. It would not be quite so bad at Uniontown. The frequent presence of a gunboat up the river would have almost as good and effect.
D. C. BUELL,
LOUISVILLE, KY., January 3, 1862.
Chief of Staff, Saint Louis, Mo.:
Do I understand that one division has come to Bowling Green, and that another (Pillow's) was ordered, but countermanded or that no re-enforcements at all have come from Camp Beauregard? Where does Pillow go into quarters and what is his strength?*
D. C. BUELL,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE OHIO,
Louisville, January 3, 1862.
General H. W. HALLECK, U. S. A.,
Commanding Department of Missouri:
MY DEAR GENERAL: I received your dispatch, and with more delay then I meant proceed to the subject of it, in compliance with your request, and I may add also at the wish of the President. I do not underrate the difficulties in Missouri, but I think it not extravagant to say that the great power of the rebellion in the West is arrayed on a front, the flanks of which are Columbus and Bowling Green and the center about where their railroad between those points crosses the Tennessee
* See Smith to Cullum, January 2, p. 527.