ten days, by order of General Halleck, through Generals Curtis and Davies. I am somewhat fearful that a portion of my command may be stopped off at Memphis. General Davies has orders from General Grant to send us all to Memphis. I shall go to Memphis in person to night, and drive by and away from there every soldier that the safety of that post will permit.
Schofield's battery was forwarded to you yesterday, on steamer Black Hawk. The Twenty-eighth Wisconsin Infantry and Thirty-third Missouri Infantry go forward to-day by steamers Swallow and Florence. I am expecting steamers from Saint Louis within the next twenty-four hours sufficient to remove my entire command.
Forces assigned to my command by Major-General Curtis are as follows: Twenty-eighth Wisconsin Infantry, Twenty-ninth Iowa Infantry, Thirty-third Iowa Infantry, Fortieth Iowa Infantry, Thirty-third Missouri Infantry, Thirty-fifth Missouri Infantry, Tenth Missouri Cavalry (detachments), and Schofield's battery, First Missouri Artillery.
I am aiming to put all this force in Helena, and to be with it at the earliest moment possible. My adjutant-general will remain here and push on the force. I will be at Memphis to engineer it by that point. I would prefer that my command should not be broken into by any new organization of force until my arrival with you. Colonel Lewis, of the Twenty-eighth Wisconsin Infantry, is my senior colonel, and I will thank you to put him in command of my forces until my arrival.
General Rosecrans has fought a most desperate battle near Murfreesborough. I fear it is not decisive. I am painfully anxious to hear from Vicksburg. I saw your dispatch to General Curtis, under date of 1st instant. We have nothing of a later date.
May the God of battles be with us.
I am, general, very respectfully,
CLINTON B. FIS,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,
Saint Louis, January 5, 1863.
Brigadier General WILLIS A. GORMAN, Helena, Ark.:
GENERAL: Your dispatches from Vicksburg are just received. We must still delay our move west till the crisis in Sherman's efforts has passed.
I am sending down coal as fast as possible, and also sending boats, but I cannot hope to procure boats enough, neither would it do to keep enough to carry all of our cavalry west. I hope to get forward forces from Columbus soon, all of which will strengthen you sufficiently to begin the move west. But you must move by land, so as to cover Helena. The fort at Arkansas Post must also be included in the movement. Colonel Chipman has given me your views, which I have appropriated, and return mine through Colonel Colburn, Colonel Chipman desiring to remain. I move as I formerly advised you, according to plans approved at Washington, and wish to adhere pretty close to these plans. The matter will be fully explained by Colonel Colburn.
Colonel Chipman informs me that a steamboat, contrary to my orders and all military laws, has entered my department to trade, under cover of a flag of truce. I expect the persons and boat sent under confinement to these headquarters, or otherwise properly tried by a commission. I have directed Colonel Colburn to call at Memphis to ascertain what complicity in this contraband trade has been transpiring there,