them stationed so as to give us the earliest possible information. I have had the whole command turned out and put to cutting timber and preparing rifle pits, so as to protect the approaches. Everything will be done that can be accomplished by energy and industry. The men are cool and determined. Most of the sick were sent off yesterday.
Respectfully, yours, &c.,
J. M. HEAD,
Colonel, Commanding Post.
COLUMBUS, KY., January 17, 1862.
Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN:
The enemy has commenced his movement on Columbus. I require strong re-enforcements. I will send the Third Mississippi forward so soon as the relief you promised shall arrive.
HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
Bowling Green, January 17, 1862-7 p.m.
General POLK, Columbus:
General Johnston places under your command the two regiments at Henderson Station; one is armed, the other will be in a few days. They will probably be needed at Fort Henry.
W. W. MACKALL,
FORT HENRY, January 17, 1862-4 a.m.
We have four gunboats, one transport, and I think one mortar boat just below us. I am prepared for this much. Will report further.
FORT HENRY, January 17, 1862-9.30 a.m.
Three of the gunboats have opened on us out of their own range. I have not returned the fire, but proceed with my preparations. Men very cool.
HEADQUARTERS FORT DONELSON,
January 17, 1862.
Brigadier General LLOYD TILGHMAN:
SIR: Eight boxes of guns arrived here yesterday and two the day before. Seven of them were sent down to the fort this morning, and Colonel Head has been informed that the other three are in the ordnance office. Knapsacks, haversacks, and canteens also arrived, and a great proportion of them distributed. Upon information that it was wanted, have telegraphed Captain Wright to send 50 shell for the 8-inch howitzer and different ammunition for small-arms. I also tele-