War of the Rebellion: Serial 023 Page 0515 Chapter XXVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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quest, yet I would not like to weaken force here if I can help it. Is the necessity pressing in your judgment? Have no arms to issue to militia there and have referred them to you. I await your answer.

H. G. WRIGHT,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE OHIO,

Cincinnati, Ohio, September 14, 1862.

Colonel JONATHAN CRANOR,

Catlettsburg, Ky., via Portsmouth, Ohio:

Go to Gallipolis soon as possible with your command and take post there or at Point Pleasant, assuming command, unless outranked by other officer.

H. G. WRIGHT,

Major-General, Commanding.

BOWLING GREEN, KY., September 14, 1862.

Via Evansville, Ind., September 19.

Major-General HALLECK, General-in-Chief:

It has been apparent to me for some time that, on purely military grounds, the force in Middle Tennessee should fall back on its base. The political effect, however, of such a move occurred to me so serious that I have hesitated to execute it, still hoping that the force in Kentucky would be able to open my communications. As that was not done it became absolutely necessary to fall back, with a portion of the force at least, to act against the enemy in Kentucky. I commenced that move Sunday last with five divisions, but its execution was delayed a couple of days by the reported movements of the enemy. I had expected that Bragg would detach a portion of his force to re-enforce Kirby Smith, while he, with the balance, would await the period of our starving out in Tennessee. It now appears that he is moving his whole force into Kentucky, and it is now concentrated, or nearly so, at Glasgow. I have therefore ordered up all but one division from Nashville . They will arrive here on the 17th. I arrived here to-day with two divisions of the first force and shall commence to move against Bragg's force on the 16th. You will not fail to observe that he is virtually between me and Louisville, and all communications by telegraph and railroad are cut off. I am not insensible to the difficulty and embarrassment of the position, but it must be so for him also, and I hope it may result in his discomfiture and not ours. The danger is that he may form a junction with Smith. I apprehend that the latter may be moving for that object now. I am retaining only a nominal hold on Nashville and at the risk of losing the force (about 5,000 men) that I have their; but I trust to the belief that there is not for the present any organized force to come against it unless Price pauses longer, and I deem it better to do so than to undergo the political effect of entirely abandoning the place. I would like your instructions or views about it. It may still be possible to withdraw the remainder of the force. I did not place implicit confidence on T----,----, [Thatcher], but he has given me correct information.

D. C. BUELL,

Major-General.