so full here they are sending a great many sick to Cincinnati. Your family and friends are well. I will try and send you a paper very often. There are eight regiments at Lebanon and six at Columbia. Manson moves to-day, 20th December, to Glasgow (this is certainly reliable) with 25,000 men. It is thought by best-informed friends here that Zollicoffer should be heavily re-enforced, so as to break their backbone. Watch Big Hatchie and Obion Bridges, on Memphis Branch. Men left Cincinnati last night for the avowed purpose of burning them. This and all I write is reliable, as Charley Johnson can tell, from whom he borrowed a vest on mail-boat. * * * It is said that 25,000 or 30,000 reserve forces are in Washington that could be thrown into Kentucky. * * * *
HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, CENTRAL ARMY,
Bowling Green, December 30, 1861.
Colonel W. W. MACKALL, Assistant Adjutant-General:
This information was obtained from the books of General Buell. As relates to the number and names of regiments it is beyond a doubt reliable. Since receiving it, I have had occasion to compare the list with partial lists contained in the letters of various correspondents of the Northern papers in reference to the troops at Columbia; at Crab Orchard, in the command of General Schoepf; at Lexington, and in General Nelson's force. In every instance I have found the regiments alluded to in those letters mentioned in the inclosed list.
S. B. BUCKNER,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Second Division.
Nashville, Tenn., December 31, 1861.
General A. SIDNEY JOHNSTON:
DEAR SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of a letter of 25th instant. Upon its receipt I immediately appointed energetic agents to collect laborers in this and adjoining counties to construct the fortifications near Nashville, but I must say that the response to my appeal for laborers has not thus far been as flattering as I had wanted and expected. I shall have within a very few days some 200 negro men at this work, and hope soon to increase this number to 500 or 600. Telegraphed you the same day your letter came to hand, asking how many laborers you thought necessary, about what length of time they would be employed, and what engineer would supervise and control the work, answers to which would have aided me in securing the laborers, but have as yet received no reply.
I fully appreciate the exigencies by which you are surrounded, and, as I have heretofore. I shall continue to use every effort within my power and all resources at my command to strengthen your position and to secure the country from invasion. In order, however, that the present resources of the State may not be overestimated, it is proper that I give you at least an approximate idea of them and some of the difficulties which I encounter at every step.
Tennessee has now organized and in the field, in addition to some independent companies, fifty-two infantry regiments and one battalion,
*The stars represent illegible portions of the original.