of cotton and sugar, seized by the officers of the Government, have been turned over to the chief quartermaster of the department. Receipts have been given therefor to the parties from which the property has been taken, stating fully the circumstances under which the seizure is made. I shall pursue this course hereafter unless otherwise directed by the Government, and entertain no doubt the Department expenses can in a feat degree be defrayed.
I returned to New Orleans from Port Hudson last evening, and shall to-day go to the headquarters of General Weitzel. I have ordered General Grover's division to move from Baton Rouge to his support immediately.
I cannot close this dispatch without again referring to the total insufficiency of the forces and material within my reach for the work that is expected of me in this department.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
N. P. BANKS,
General-in-Chief U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.
P. S. - During the operations on the 14th the following detachments were thrown out from Grover's division: The One hundred and fifty-ninth New York, Col. E. L. Molineux; a section of artillery, and Company E, First Louisiana Cavalry, moving on the Clinton plank road parallel to the march of the main body of the division, and taking post at the intersection of that road and that cross-road leading from Springfield Landing. This cross-road, like most of the others, differed essentially from what it was represented on the map, being for a considerable part of the distance a mere by-path.
From Emory's division the One hundred and sixty-second New York, Lieutenant-Colonel Blanchard, a section of artillery, and a squad of cavalry moving on the same road up to the point held by the above-named detachment. Three companies of the One hundred and sixty-second New York, under Major Bogart, with a few mounted men, were detached to destroy by fire the Strickland Bridge over the Comite, which the expedition previously sent our under Colonel Chickering, Forty-first Massachusetts, could not reach. Captain Dunham, assistant adjutant-general, who was ordered to superintend the execution of this duty, rejoined headquarters during the afternoon, reporting the work effectually done, but that the there was a ford just above passable for cavalry and infantry. These three companies remained at the junction of the Clinton road and the cross-road to watch the latter.
The Forty-eighth Massachusetts, Col. E. F. Stone; a section of Arnold's battery (G), Fifth Artillery, and Company A, Second Rhode Island Cavalry, formed a guard to the train.
The troops left in Baton rouge consisted of the Forty-first Massachusetts, Col. Thomas E. Chicikering; One hundred and seventy-third New York, Coll C. B. Morton; One hundred and seventy-fifth New York, Col. M. K. Bryan; Third Louisiana Native Guards (colored), Col. John A. Nelson; Eighteenth New York Battery, Captain Mack, and company F, of the Second Rhode Island Cavalry. The post was placed under the command of Colonel Chickering.
Besides this force the siege guns, manned by the Twenty-first Indiana Artillery, Col. J. W. McMillan, were placed in position on the river front to guard against any contingency which might arise in the event of disaster to the fleet.