Lieutenant-Colonel Gantt to have command of the outpost, scouts, and pickets for the protection of the approaches from Baton Rouge to this point and Clinton. He will establish his main camps at suitable points in front of Clinton toward Baton Rouge. His command will consist of his own battalion, Wilbourn's battalion, Plain's, Daigre's, Norman's, Stockdale's, Terrell's, and Stuart's companies.
Major Garland will have charge of the approaches from Baton Rouge to Camp Moore with his own battalion and Rhodes' company. Lester's and Herren's companies, of Pinson's regiment, will take post near Ponchatoula, under the orders of Lieutenant-Colonel Shields.
Any other cavalry commands not named in the foregoing orders will remain in their present positions until further orders, and report by letter to these headquarters.
The movements above ordered will take place as soon as practicable. All details in the immediate vicinity of this post will be relieved by Colonel Wingfield's regiment as soon as practicable.
By command of Major General Frank. Gardner:
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
Lavaca, Tex., January 15, 1863.
Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,
Acting Adjutant-General, P. S. Army, Galveston, Tex.:
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your two communications of the 8th and 9th instant, and state for the information of the major-general commanding that the land adjacent to the position of the armed blockaders (now off Saluria) is unfavorable for land operations except with the lightest pieces, and then the range is too great. The bridges and flat-boats affording communication between Indianola and Saluria have been burned or removed. The land is low and flat, and the only road to the Pass is on the margin of the bay.
I would respectfully submit the following for the general's approval:
If it is the intention of the major-general to attack the enemy's vessels in this bay with a fleet from the east, I will fit up and man a schooner now in those waters of about 70 tons burden. There is also a small high-pressure steamboat, but of very little power, old and frail, and very slow. She may act as a tender, with a reserve of boarders and launches. Small sail-boats can be procured, dismantled, and used as launches. I can mount on the schooner mentioned about two 24-pounders and one 12-pounder.
I have about forty lances; no six-shooters nor cutlasses. My command at this post is very small - only two companies; but if the general approves of my fitting up the vessels mentioned I will order a sufficient force from the command at Corpus Christi to fill up the number required. It would be necessary to order Colonel Brown to have a company of his cavalry battalion on the peninsula to cover, if necessary, a gun detachment. The vessels off Saluria are a three-masted schooner, with six heavy guns, and a mortar schooner, with a 10-inch mortar and two 32-pounders, and between 80 and 100 men on both vessels.
My orders from General Bee confine me to this post, and I have not the power to detach a portion of my command even were I sure of success. I most respectfully ask the major-general commanding that I