War of the Rebellion: Serial 025 Page 0446 WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS. Chapter XXIX.

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they cannot well get back. I do not wish to have a bridge left standing, and therefore desire to have an understanding with the officer in command of the cavalry as to what bridge or bridges I am to leave for him to cross on and then destroy.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. B. McPHERSON,

Major-General.

HDQRS. RIGHT WING, THIRTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Camp, Yocknapatalfa, December 20, 1862.

Major-General GRANT,

Commanding Thirteenth Army Corps:

GENERAL: General Logan's division will move to the position occupied by General McArthur's, near the Yockna Station, at 6 o'clock to-morrow morning.

I send you extract of a letter from Colonel Leggett,* giving some information brought in by a scout from his command whom we sent out. If this information is correct, and it seems to be confirmed, at least partially, from other sources, I am decently of the opinion that the rebels are concentrating their forces at Jackson and Vicksburg, with a view of throwing them all in Vicksburg, if necessary, and that our policy is to have as many or more men at that point than they can bring to bear.

In view of the fact that the railroad from Grenada to Memphis is so seriously damaged that it will take some weeks to open it, and that with our present long line of communication interrupted and labile to be so again when reopened we cannot well go beyond Grenada and for a junction with the forces moving down the river, I think it best to fall back to the north side of the Tallahatchie, hold that line, and then send as many as two divisions to Memphis, to be added to the forces collecting for the Vicksburg expedition; open the railroad from Memphis to Grand Junction, and establish an easy and rapid communication, which I think could be protect with our strong cavalry force and a body of infantry and artillery on the Tallahatchie, Holly Springs, Hernando, &c.

I have merely suggested these remarks in consequence of the note at the bottom of your letter; and I will also that in consequence of orders from Washington placing General McClernand in charge of the expedition under you I would, if in your place, proceed to Memphis and take command of it myself. It is the great feature of the campaign, and its execution rightfully belongs to you.

In case you go I would like to accompany you with two divisions, Lauman's and Logan's; but am ready for any position to which you may assign me.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. B. McPHERSON,

Major-General.

HDQRS. RIGHT WING, THIRTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

December 20, 1862.

Colonel M. D. LEGGETT,

Commanding Second Brigade, Water Valley:

COLONEL: Your dispatch is received, and I have sent a copy to General Grant.

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* Not found.

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