War of the Rebellion: Serial 025 Page 0410 WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS. Chapter XXIX.

Search Civil War Official Records

to the river, and therefore great reason for some haste. If the boats come from Saint Louis I will proceed to the work, let my strength be what it may.

I am, with great respect, yours, truly,

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major-General, Commanding.

HELENA, ARK., December 13, 1862.

Major General U. S. GRANT,

Commanding Thirteenth Army Corps:

DEAR GRANT: Curtis sent Gorman, the only brigadier-general in the department, to supersede me. He relieved me in the command here once before and sent me to Pilot Knob, for which he was severely rapped by Halleck and ordered to send me back. Halleck also mentioned this movement in his official report to the President as being most unfortunate.

Curtis will do everything in his power to injure me because I have denounced his d - d rascality.

I shall go in command of the troops to co-operate with you from this station, and shall have the satisfaction of knowing that with you and Sherman I shall be properly dealt with.

It is my opinion that if the movement down the river could be properly timed it would be best for the troops not to be back on the Mississippi at all, but in connection with the gunboats to take the battery on the bluff up Yazoo River and land the troops at that point under cover of the gunboats. This battery is 15 or 20 miles up the Yazoo and 12 miles from Vicksburg, on the road between the latter place and Yazoo City.

I am afraid Gorman will refuse to give ne as large a force as I desire, as he may well imagine that I shall not come under his command again if I can avoid it. He is an old acquaintance of mine, and I like him socially, but would rather be commanded by a military man. There is a movement by the army here as well as by the citizens to get me reinstated in this command.

Our troops under militia rule have torn this country all to pieces, and the citizen are alarmed at the change of commanders.

I will write to Sherman to-night.

Very truly, your friend,

FRED'K STEELE,

Brigadier-General.

OXFORD, MISS., December 13, 1862.

Colonel T. LYLE DICKEY,

Commanding Cavalry Division;

I want you to strike the Mobile road as far south as possible and follow up north, destroying it all you can. Particular roads to pass over cannot be given. You may encounter difficulties that will defeat the object of the expedition. I do not want any great risk run, but leave this entirely to your judgment.

Dodge starts a force of probably 2,500 men from Corinth southward to-day, intended to co-operate with you. If practicable you might continue north until you meet them and return by Pontotoc to the front.

U. S. GRANT,

Major-General.