an event I ordered General Hardee yesterday to make, as promptly as it could be done, preparations to fall back to Nashville and cross the river.
The movements of the enemy on my right flank would have made a retrograde in that direction to confront the enemy indispensable in a short time. But the probability of having the ferriage of this army corps across the Cumberland intercepted by the gunboats of the enemy admits of no delay in making the movement.
Generals Beauregard and Hardee are, equally with myself, impressed with the necessity of withdrawing our force from this line at once.
With great respect, your obedient servant,
A. S. JOHNSTON,
General, C. S. Army.
BOWLING GREEN, February 9, 1862.
Destroy every bridge and trestle on the railroad from Tennessee Crossing to Paris. Send all telegrams by way of Montgomery and not via Florence.
W. W. MACKALL,
PARIS, TENN., February 8, 1862-11 p. m.
No further news from Donelson. Three of our steamers, viz, the Orr, Appleton Belle, and Lynn Boyd, were burned yesterday morning by our men to prevent them from falling into the hands of the enemy; all on board escaped safely. Five hundred Federal infantry and three transport boats are at the bridge, burning and destroying all the houses this side of the river. The bridge is now on fire. The condition of the roads prevented our bringing but few tents, without flies, but few cooking utensils, no extra clothing. The lives and health of the men require that we should have some more necessaries if we are to remain here along. We leave in the morning and will camp a few miles east of this place, and will scout continually towards the river. The rolling stock on the railroad all safe.
J. H. MILLER,
ROSSELLVILLE, February 8, 1862-12 p. m.
Captain W. D. PICKETT:
In a communication from Green River to 12 o'clock yesterday no troops on this side; many deserters daily; troops considerably demoralized; about 300 men supposed to have gone to Henderson; remainder in vicinity of Calhoun.
Messenger just in from Louisville. Opinion there that expedition up Cumberland and Tennessee chiefly a diversion, derived from opinion of a member of Buell's staff. A reliable person, whose source of information is from clerk of Cairo and Evansville boats, says entire fleet has left Cairo; that five gunboats have gone up Tennessee River, and that the remaining gunboats and transports, to the number of sixteen, up the Cumber-