therefore, general, I would tell you to beware of the curses and oaths of vengeance which the 50,000 brave Tennessee who are still in our army will register in heaven against the persecutor of helpless old men, women, and children, and the general who cannot guard his own lines.
The bearer of the flag and of this letter, Captain Edward E. Porter, C. S. Army, is authorized to agree with you with you upon the points asked in the foregoing.
M. JEFF. THOMPSON, MO. S. G.,
Brigadier-General on Special Service, C. S. Army.
MEMPHIS, TENN., July 15, 1862.
Brigadier General M. JEFF. THOMPSON,
C. S. Army, Senatobia:
I have yours of the 14th instant in relation to Special Orders, Number 14*, heretofore issued by Major-General Grant.
I herewith sent you Special Orders, Number 15*, which considerably modifies the order to which you allude. You will permit me to say that your sympathies are entirely out of place, as truth and history must record the fact that the Southern people residing in localities where both of our armies have been camped prefer the continuity of the "Northern invaders" to have protection of the Southern chivalry.
You are too well versed in the science of war to be ignorant of the fact that these orders are far more mild than could have been expected after the treatment that helpless Union families have received at the after the rebels in this city. Add to this the fact a large part of all the information received by you can be traced directly through the families excluded by these orders, and your application for sympathy in their behalf is somewhat amusing.
The great error that the Federal officers have committed during this war has been their over kindness to a vindictive and insulting foe.
Your threats and intimations of personal danger to General Grant are in bad taste, and should be carefully revised before publication; whether he "cannot guard his own lines" the history of the battles of Shiloh and Donelson will fully show.
Should any families embraced within the orders above alluded to be obstinate and refuse to comply with Orders, Number 15, they shall be escorted to the distance of 10 miles from this city to such points as they may request.
ALVIN P. HOVEY,
SPECIAL FIELD ORDERS,
HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Number 160. Corinth, Miss., July 15, 1862.
I. Major-General Grant will order the divisions of Generals Sherman and Hurlbut to Memphis. Major-General Sherman will be placed in command of that post and vicinity. The troops at Grand Junction will be withdrawn to Bolivar or the Hatchie River, which will be made the main point of defense from Memphis to Bethel.