War of the Rebellion: Serial 025 Page 0386 WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS. Chapter XXIX.

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does not go smoothly. General Grant gives operators choice of obeying his orders or working on fortifications. Men all dissatisfied and want to leave.

SCHERMERHORN,

Chief Operator, Advance Telegraph Corps.

OXFORD, MISS., December 5, 1862.

COMMANDING OFFICER GRAND JUNCTION:

The release of Van Duzer does not entitle him to interfere with telegraph matter or to remain in this department. He must leave by first train.

U. S. GRANT,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS,

Grand Junction, Miss., December 5, 1862-5.50 p. m.

Major General H. W. HALLECK, General-in-Chief:

SIR: I have the honor to report that J. C. Van Duzer arrived here under guard with a written order signed by General Grant for his removal to Cairo. I did not fell that I had the responsibility of him and declined to liberate him, as I receive my orders from General Grant and not from the War Department. I had good reason to suppose the dispatch bogus for the purpose of having Van Duzer released.

J. McDERMOTT,

Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Post.

WAR DEPARTMENT,

Washington, December 5, 1862.

Major-General GRANT, Abbeville, Miss.:

The Secretary of War has called my attention to your telegraphic dispatches in regard to operators and officers. Colonel Stager was charged by the President, under a law of Congress, with the entire management of military telegraph operations. He directs all purchases and appoints and removes all officers, under direction of the Secretary of War. If any operator fails in his duty report him for removal. In extreme cases he may be arrested, just as you can arrest an officer of the Navy or of the Treasury Department. Colonel Stager directs all telegraphic purchases. In case of deficiencies report the fact, but do not order purchases. They cannot be paid for out of the Quartermaster's Department. Any orders to that effect given by you will be immediately countermanded.

H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief.

OXFORD, MISS., December 5, 1862.

Major General H. W. HALLECK, General-in-Chief:

I have never ordered a purchase nor the disbursement of a dollar for telegraph purposes; never interfered with the prerogative of the superintendent; never ordered the establishment of an office or extension of