decide at this moment. The same great result would be expected to follow, though perhaps in a less direct way. I suspect you would like to be released, and that I am inflicting more upon you than you bargained for.
D. C. BUELL.
CAIRO, ILL., February 17, 1862.
MY DEAR HALLECK: I have telegraphed to-day pretty much all the glorious news of the surrender of Fort Donelson.
I presume your telegram to "Stop all forces required to resist Beauregard" has reference to a possible movement from Columbus on this point which he might make, thinking us stripped of the troops for the Cumberland. I have anticipated it, but was willing to trust to luck a little to strengthen Grant. Now that Fort Donelson has fallen I won't be so generous till all danger has passed. I have had cavalry scouts constantly out on both sides of the Mississippi, and to-day have sent a gunboat and steamer armed with infantry to look along the river, but not to fight.
For our defense I think we have a force that will give the little Frenchman a warm reception.
At this point (Cairo) we have nearly three regiments and a company of artillery to serve the guns in the fort. At Bird's Point we have four small regiments and some cavalry, and at and above Fort Holt say 250 artillery, with sixteen field guns, and 150 cavalry.
Besides the land forces we have two of the disabled gunboats from Fort Donelson-more than capable to encounter any of the rebel gunboats, and two others out of order and with no power of locomotion, but can use their batteries, for which I will supply infantry details.
In consequence of their sending up a rebel steamer this morning to reconnoiter I have this afternoon returned the compliment. I have given special instructions to Colonel Buford and Captain Phelps, who go on the expedition, to carefully observe whether, as is possible, they are about to evacuate the place.
I though it important to push gunboats and the mortar flats to Clarksville, which bars our way to Nashville.
Though I suppose I am no longer necessary here for the present, with three other generals ranking me in the district, yet I will not return till you think I can be spared. As I made provision but for a short stay, if of no special necessity here I would like to return to Saint Louis to bring up arrears and prepare for any forward move you propose. I think I have made ample provision for the wounded at Paducah and Mound City.
G. W. CULLUM.
LOUISVILLE, February 18 , 1862.
Saint Louis, Mo.:
As the object of the re-enforcements I have been sending you was to assist at Fort Donelson and succor the force there if necessary, and as they are no longer required for that object, we had best consult about further operations, as well for the great object as to determine the dis-