are projected to break up railroad communication between Louisville and Nashville,and between Memphis and Grant's army. General Johnston will go immediately to Mississippi,and will, with the least delay, re-enforce Pemberton, by sending a division, say 8,000 men,from the troops in this quarter. No recent intelligence from Pemberton's army. I will proceed in the train of to-day, unless your answer to my dispatch of last night should turn me back to Richmond. The feeling in East Tennessee and much want of confidence in our strength.
ABINGDON, VA., December 15, 1862.
Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON, Secretary of War, C. S. A.:
SIR: I received your telegram, requiring me to send two Virginia regiments from my command to report for duty at Richmond City. Accordingly, I have ordered the Fifty-fourth and Twenty-ninth Regiments and the Twenty-seventh Battalion (dismounted) to move. The whole should give, rank, and file, 1,800 men, though absentees may diminish this number. If so, they shall be sent forward as soon as practicable. I have another Virginia regiment I can send forward, if desired. I have ordered it to the railroad, so as to be in readiness, if you wish it. There is a battalion of infantry (Kentuckians) left in my command, the other Kentucky infantry being in Kentucky, as you were advised. Your letter to me indicated your concurrence in the views I had expressed in oral communications to you, and, I presume, it will now be your object to assign me with the troops remaining in my command to some field of service like that suggested in these communications, and to intrust to me pursuit of the policy indicated in our conversation. I trust you will make no delay in doing so, for the Kentuckians left in that State should be either supported or disbanded.
I am, with great esteem, yours, &c.,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF TENNESSEE.
Murfreesborough, December 16, 1862.
Lieutenant-General POLK, Commanding Polk's Corps:
GENERAL: The general commanding directs that Gardner's,now Deas' brigade, under Brigadier General E. C. Walthall, will march at 12 m., with three days' rations, to cover a train to Lebanon, for the purpose of collecting and bringing back a large quantity of wheat. The expedition will encamp to-night on the road, so as to reach Lebanon to-morrow, and load and return next day. Its front will be covered by a regiment of cavalry of Pegram's brigade, and the flank toward the enemy will be also covered by Pegram's pickets. On its return, the brigade will encamp at or near the crossing of Fall Creek by Lebanon pike, so as to serve as a support to Pegram's cavalry, and to cover and protect the Baird Mills, now in our use. The Mississippi regiment now at Black's Mills will accompany this expedition, and return to this point with the train and join its brigade.
I am, general, respectfully, yours,
GEORGE WM. BRENT,
(Copy sent to General Wheeler, chief of cavalry, for his information.)