must be brought hither preparatory to a forward movement. I regret very much that I have to submit to even this unavoidable delay. I cannot think of protracting it, except under compulsion of the gravest necessity. To attempt to re-enforce General Breckinridge would protract it indefinitely. The success of the campaign depends now upon the promptness and boldness of our movements and the ability which we may manifest to avail ourselves of our present advantages. The enemy are still transferring their troops from Corinth and its vicinity eastward. They will by the end of this week have reduced their force to its minimum. We should be quick to take advantage of this, for they will soon begin to get in re-enforcements under the late call for volunteers. The present obstructed condition of the railroads is another reason for instant action. In fact every consideration makes it important that I shall move forward without a day's unnecessary delay. I earnestly desire your co-operation in such a movement, and will, as I have before said, be glad to place my army and myself under your command in that contingency. The very names of yourself and General Breckinridge would bring thousands to our ranks and carry dismay to those of the enemy.
You speak in your dispatch of the frightful amount of sickness in General Breckinridge's division. I fear the sweltering heats of this latitude will soon begin to tell fearfully upon my own ranks, and am for that reason the more anxious to take them northward, where we hope to gain accessions from those Tennesseeans and Kentuckians who have seen and felt the wretchedness of northern domination.
Captain Loughborough will deliver this communication to you and explain more particularly the condition of things in this vicinity.
Please inform me by telegraph of your determination, so that in the event of its being favorable we may concert a plan of operations.
I am, general, with the profoundest respect, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE TENNESSEE, Tupelo, Miss., August 4, 1862.
Gov. JOHN J. PETTUS,
Jackson County, Mississippi:
GOVERNOR: The events of each day impress me more deeply with the importance of prompt action on the part of this army, and you will therefore pardon me for again invoking your assistance. You can strengthen my army several thousand by calling out about 2,000 of the militia to garrison Meridian, Columbus, Okolona, and Verona, and to protect the railroad bridges and trestle-work. This will enable me to withdraw all the Confederate troops from that duty and put them in the field. I must beg you in the event of your being willing to comply with this request to act promptly, as I intend to order all the disposable troops forward to Tupelo within the present week, preparatory to an immediate forward movement. I would suggest to Your Excellency the propriety of preserving absolute secrecy as to the proposed movement, as the enemy are doubtless impressed with the idea that the whole army is being moved eastward and as they seem to be acting upon that belief. You may also aid me very greatly by sending forward recruits,