HDQRS. FIRST DIVISION, WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
Columbus, January 24, 1862.
W. W. MACKALL, Assistant Adjutant-General:
I have kept you advised by telegraph of the condition of things and the course of events here since the enemy made his late demonstration.
What the particular object of it was has not clearly transpired. That it was intended to make a demonstration on Tennessee River seems the only thing which has been made plain. I am advised also that General Grant, who was with the column above Mayfield Creek, stated that they (his column) returned because the support he expected from Saint Louis was prevented from reaching him by the ice.
I have been constantly advised of the position and movements of the enemy and the condition of his troops. General Smith moved from Paducah to Mayfield with a column of infantry, artillery, and cavalry, in all about 5,000; thence to Murray, where he turned part of his force towards Tennessee River. My last information is (up to yesterday) that the rest of his force was moving "west," which means, I suppose, towards Mayfield.
I have ordered Crain's field battery and Gee's Arkansas regiment from Memphis to Tennessee River Bridge; also Lea's regiment from Henderson Station; also Browder's, from the same station to the same point, so soon as armed. I also ordered about 1,000 cavalry to move upon his flank. These are of my immediate command. I am perfectly satisfied that to do the work before us as it should be done we ought to have an additional force between this and the Tennessee River of at least 40,000 men, and the sooner we get this force and get it in position the better; and now is the time to make the preparation necessary. Let it not be postponed until we shall have them to deal with, but do it beforehand.
I hope the measures necessary to prepare this force may be inaugurated as early as possible. We have the men and the resources, and they should be employed.
I am continuing to strengthen the defenses of this post.
I remain, respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
Bowling Green, January 24, 1862.
Captain M. H. WRIGHT,
Ordnance, C. S. Army, Nashville:
SIR: You will send to General Crittenden, by the Cumberland River, for Monsarrat's battery, composed of three 6-pounders smooth bore and one 8-pounder rifled cannon, a supply of spherical case for s and shell for the rifled gun. I understand there is no deficiency except in these particulars.
There will be also needed a full supply of ammunition for 4,000 muskets-about 2,500 Harper's Ferry percussion and 1,500 flint-lock, old pattern, and perhaps some small supply for shot-guns.
With great respect, your obedient servant,
A. S. JOHNSTON,
General, C. S. Army.