War of the Rebellion: Serial 029 Page 0206 KY.,MID.AND E.TENN.,N.ALA., AND SW.VA. Chapter XXXII.

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Hence,before the battle we have to pay 100 men for the above per cent., and we now have the preceding percentage for each hundred on the pay-roll. Although these are better results than I have expected, they are much worse than they ought to be. I am now endeavoring to bring the absentees to some rule, and reduce their numbers. The inspection system detects the illegal absentees, but it requires in addition the paymasters with the corps to know who ought not to be paid.

Captain Peterson comes to show what means we use to detect absentees, and what even then are our results.

He is also charged to carry on a form of return, which, if adopted in the Adjutant-General's office and throughout the army, will force the various commanders to give such data in their returns as will afford means of knowing the true condition and strength of our forces, which, with the present forms in use, is not the case.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. S. ROSECRANS,

Major-General, Commanding Department.

STATEMENT OF FORCE.

Fourteenth Army Corps..................................... 27,725

Twentieth Army Corps...................................... 13,031

Twenty-first Army Corps................................... 13,061

Cavalry not included...................................... 4,295

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Total..................................................... 58,112

Detached troops:

Nashville.......................................... 7,495

Gallatin........................................... 3,550

Bowling............................................ 1,840

Clarksville........................................ 1,674

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Total...................................................... 14,559

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Grand total present........................................ 72,671

Strength present and absent February 14, 1863...............133,305

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Discount................................................... 60,634

Detached troops............................................ 14,559

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Number that cannot be led against the enemy................ 75,193

MURFREESBOROUGH, TENN., March 1, 1863-12.23 p.m.

Hon. E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War:

I see that by your permission the reports of the corps commanders of the battle of Stone's River are published. They are but a partial view of the operations, and an omission in General McCook's report to state the meeting of corps commanders at my headquarters, and his final instructions on Tuesday night, coupled with an erroneous statement in General Johnson's report, are calculated to mislead.* Mine should also be published, omitting such statistics as ought not to be made public.

W. S. ROSECRANS.

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*See correspondence between Rosecrans and McCook and letters from Stanley and Thomas in March, 1863, Part II, pp.381-383.

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