War of the Rebellion: Serial 011 Page 0055 Chapter XXII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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most removed from my observation and communicate the same to me and to those commanders who may be in a position to be particularly affected by it. You will of course appreciate the importance of weighing all such information carefully and of using great caution in the selection of spies, so that you may arrive as nearly as possible at the true state of the case, and that the enemy may not profit by the indiscretion or treachery of our own agents.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

D. C. BUELL,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

SAVANNAH, March 21, 1862.

(Via FORT HENRY, March 23.)

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

Saint Louis, Mo.:

It will be impossible to move with any celerity, taking artillery. Corinth cannot be taken without meeting a large force, say 30,000. A general engagement would be inevitable; therefore I will wait a few days for further instructions. I have just returned from Pittsburg.

U. S. GRANT,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF WEST TENNESSEE,

Savannah, March 21, 1862.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

Saint Louis, Mo.:

I have just returned from Pittsburg. The roads back are next to impassable for artillery or baggage wagons. I have certain information that thirteen trains of cars arrived at Corinth on the 19th, with twenty cars to each train, all loaded with troops. This would indicate that Corinth cannot be taken without a general engagement, which, from your instructions, is to be avoided. This, taken in connection with the impassable state of the roads, has determined me not to move for the present without further orders.

The temper of the rebel troops is such that there is but little doubt but that Corinth will fall much more easily than Donelson did when we do move. All accounts agree in saying that the great mass of the rank and file are heartily tired. One thing I learn, however, is against us: Most of the impressed troops from this State are being sent to the sea-coast and older soldiers from there.

I do not think as yet any steps are being taken to interfere with the navigation of the river. Bands of cavalry are prowling all over West Tennessee, collecting men who have been drafted into the service and such supplies as they can get.

Some 9 or 10 men made their escape from the cars at Bethel, and came in here yesterday. From them I learn there are about 400 men at Union City, two regiments of infantry and probably some cavalry at Humboldt, a force not estimated at Jackson, and small forces at various points on the road.

Paris and Bethel are deserted. They think the force at Union City is anxious to be captured.