War of the Rebellion: Serial 007 Page 0786 OPERATIONS IN KY.,TENN.,N. ALA.,AND S. W. VA. Chapter XVII.

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department the entire loss of my office and store-house, in which were all the supplies of equipments, &c., of the ordnance department in this city, together with all my papers, books, and vouchers. The cashbook and vouchers are saved in a damaged condition from the safe.

The fire originated about 3.30 o'clock this morning, but how or exactly where I have not yet been able to ascertain. I had a sentinel at either door-house fronted on both streets-and a private watch inside. The watch inside reports that the first he knew of it the house was in flames, shortly after which an explosion occurred of some caps and friction primers and case of rockets, showing conclusively to my mind that it was the work of an incendiary. I have ordered the arrest of both sentinels and watch for an investigation.

The loss is very heavy-between 400 and 600 sets of artillery harness, 10,000 to 12,000 sets of accouterments and equipments, 300 cavalry saddles, 2,000,000 percussion caps, 6,000 friction primers, besides numerous articles of supplies, which will be enumerated in as accurate detail as possible in another report.

I have the honor to request that the general appoint a board of survey to investigate the case.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. H. WRIGHT,

First Lieutenant, Artillery and Ordnance.

BRIGADE HEADQUARTERS, Beech Grove, Ky., December 23, 1861.

Lieutenant-Colonel MACKALL,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Bowling Green, Ky.:

SIR: I feel it my duty frankly to say that the failure to receive the reserves and supplies I ordered up a month ago, and upon which in part the plan of campaign was predicated, has given and is likely to give serious embarrassment. I now receive no responses to communications addressed to Knoxville connected with the most important details. I have five regiments north of the river and two south. The strength of the enemy is unknown, but it is reported by the country people to be very large. There are now, I learn, in East Tennessee, besides the force at Cumberland Gap, eight full regiments and the Georgia battalion, a battery of artillery, and eight cavalry companies. I beg respectfully to say that it cannot be that half this force is required there. On the other hand, were this column strengthened properly, the enemy could not venture to pass London to attack Cumberland Gap. We could open the Cumberland and drive the enemy from Somerset and Columbia.

I trouble you with these suggestions, about which I feel the deepest concern, because I learn that Major-General Crittenden has gone to Richmond.

Very respectfully,

F. K. ZOLLICOFFER,

Brigadier-General.

P. S.-Inclosed I send copies of a general order* and a proclamation I have deemed it expedient to print and circulate.

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*Order not found.

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