A careful observation of the river from its mouth up has entirely confirmed me in the opinion I have always had of the futility of any defensive works upon it. A battery at the mouth may be judicious, as giving to the people a feeling of security; but it is everywhere so narrow and the thickets and canebrakes are so dense upon its banks that no vessel could live that had show a pilot [?]. I believe that all such narrow streams, having no great interests upon their banks, should be kept open to invite attempts to navigate them. Sharpshooters would defend better than batteries. This river has no farms upon its banks below Liberty, with two or three exceptions, and very few above. Nothing to tempt raids.
General, the symptoms are promising an early end to the war. It would be a subject of great pride in our future history if we could close the war in full possession of all our coast. Shall we not attempt to complete what you have so well inaugurated and carried so far forward?
Very respectfully, yours,
C. G. FORSHEY.
AT CAMP, March 2, 1863.
Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,
Assistant Adjutant-General, &c., Houston, Tex.:
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to inform the major-general commanding, &c., that all the troops of this brigade are now and have been on the route for several days, pressing forward in despite of high waters and the most atrocious roads.
The first detachment of Reily's regiment is in Louisiana before this, having been within 50 miles of the Sabine more than one week past. One company of Bagby's regiment was left at Hempstead to guard quartermaster and commissary stores, and for which no transportation has been obtained; it marches to-morrow. The men, in despite of the elements, were in good health and spirits.
P. S.-I shall now proceed in advance of the troops to report in person to Major-General Taylor either at Alexandria or Opelousas.
Port Hudson, La., March 3, 1863.
Major General RICHARD TAYLOR,
Commanding West. District of Louisiana:
GENERAL: I have the honor to inform you that the information of another gunboat having passed Vicksburg is erroneous. The river is now entirely free of the enemy between this and that point. the enemy are reported to be again at Rosedale. Information is not positive. The enemy at Baton Rouge are evidently nearly prepared for an advance at this point, and any day may bring the information of his putting his force in motion.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,