War of the Rebellion: Serial 010 Page 0024 KY.,TENN.,N.MISS.,N.ALA.,AND SW.VA. Chapter XXII.

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except any further neglect on their part. For the present the condition of the boat will prevent her going to Pittsburg, from which point there can be but one point of attack, and that is Corinth. All the Union people whom I found (and they were few) represent Corinth as the place where they except an attack. Yet, by seemingly advancing on Corinth with a well appointed force, and sending off a small party of cavalry to the left, by Farmington, it may be still that the interruption of the road without a general engagement could be successfully accomplished. I am willing to undertake it with such force as the general may designate.

Inclosed please find the report of Major Ricker. The return of the division for yesterday gives the strength, to which has been added six companies Fifth Ohio Cavalry, one battery of four rifled 10-pounder Parrott guns, Captain---, and Colonel McDowell, Sixth Iowa Infantry, from none of which have morning reports yet been submitted.

I await the general's further orders at Pittsburg Landing.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

W. T. SHERMAN,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

Captain WILLIAM McMICHAEL,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Savannah, Tenn.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION,

Steamer Continental, Pittsburg Landing, March 16, 1862.

SIR: Inclosed please find a report of Major Bowman, Fourth Illinois Cavalry.*

The general impression of General Hurlbut here and of the people is that the cavalry of the enemy is scattered all over the country in small bands. I have been out to Bethel, 3 miles, and think the force which was here was a regiment of infantry and four companies of cavalry. General Cheatham's force has gone toward Purdy.

I have made preparations for a strong reconnaissance toward Corinth, which I will convert into a destruction of the telegraph and railroad lines if possible, and report its result as soon as I return. I will use the cavalry and my division. General Hurlbut will guard this point. A full return will be sent to-morrow.

I will send down the two companies of the Fifth Ohio as soon as the reconnaissance is complete.

W. T. SHERMAN,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

Captain WILLIAM McMICHAEL,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION,

Pittsburg Landing, March 17, 1862.

SIR: Last night I dispatched a party of cavalry at 6 p.m., under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Heath, Fifth Ohio Cavalry, for a strong reconnaissance, if possible, to be converted into an attack upon the Memphis road. The command got off punctually, followed at 12 at night by the First Brigade of my division, commanded by Colonel McDowell, the other brigade to follow in order.

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*Not found.

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