from the want of sufficient means (men and materials) to hold them longer that was done.
Question No. 7. What loss of troops, stores, or arms occurred at the time of the retreat from Corinth?
Answer No. 7. This loss is slight and trifling in comparison to the importance of the object effected. My inspector-general have been engaged in determining the facts called for. As soon ascertained they shall be communicated to the War Department. I suppose about 200 stragglers and deserters, about 1,500 arms burned at Booneville, and about 500 left in the dark at a convalescent camp 4 miles south of Corinth, will cover those two items of losses. With regard to the ordnance stores provisions, I could obtain no return from the respective of those departments, although repeatedly called for by me before leaving Tupelo. I firmly believe that all we lost at Corinth and during the retreat would amount to much less than one day's expenses of the enemy's army in this quarter.
G. T. BEAUREGARD,
General, Commanding Department No. 2.
[Col. WM. PRESTON JOHNSTON.]
MOBILE, ALA, June 24, 1862.
Memorandum of a conversation with General Beauregard, in accordance with my letter of instructions* of June 14, 1862, held after receiving his letter in reply to therein interrogatories therein, June 24, 1862, at Mobile.+
General Beauregard informs me that his army numbered less than 45,000 effective men, after deducting those who were reported present for duty, but were sent back on railroad as unfit for service, some 3,000 or 4,000 in number. He places the enemy's numbers at 90,000 effective men, and certainly not less than 85,000. The prisoners and deserters reported Halleck's army at 125,000 or 130,000 men, but General Beauregard bases his estimate on the facts, as he learns them, that they have three corps and a reserve corps, four in all, and estimates to each corps four divisions, to each division three brigades, to each brigade four regiments, to each regiment 500 men; making about the number estimated, inclusive of reserve corps. General Beauregard informs me that to the best of his knowledge the reserves of the enemy were concentrated in front of his position, all of the troops in reserve in Arkansas, Missouri Kentucky, and Illinois having been brought forward, except Curtis' force in Arkansas, which he places at 10,000 men. He is unable to form a definite of the number of the reserve thus brought forward.
General Beauregard informs me that the informal meeting of general officers mentioned in his reply approved of the retreat; but that of course he did not consult them as to his or place of retreat; that these were his own. The general says he learns that Wallace's division has been moved to Grand Junction, and half of Buell's troops across the Tennessee River, and that this corps threatens Chattanooga. Our army remains near Tupelo, ready to take the offensive, except General Breckinridge's division, which has been moved to Oxford, Miss. General Beauregard has formed no definite plan of attack or of cutting the communications of the enemy, on whose movements he is dependent, and of whose errors he proposes to avail himself. He informs me that the means of transportation (wagons and horses) are very deficient, but that he is making every effort to remedy the defect.
*See report No. 38.