War of the Rebellion: Serial 033 Page 0157 Chapter XXXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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your removal. I have no knowledge, official or unofficial, in regard to the allegations of that letter. I saw it stated in the newspapers that the Missouri delegation in Congress had nearly unanimously asked for your removal, but for what reason was not stated. Nothing on the subject was said to me till I received the order to assign General Sumner to the command of that department. I was informed at the time that the command had been promised to General Sumner some four or five months ago.

I can only add that this assignment was made without any intervention or advice on my part, and I am entirely ignorant what charges, if any, were made a against you by the delegation.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE MISSOURI,

March 16, 1863.

General SCHOFIELD,

Lebanon:

Forsyth can be held with a small force, surrounded as it is with almost impassable streams at this season of the year. Was our foraging party on the opposite side of White River? I suppose it must have been. Such parties should be very guarded, foraging in front of our posts. The streams and mountains between West Plains and Forsyth are such obstructions as to render co-operation almost impossible in any direct line. The enemy will have to choose which side of White River he will take if he dares to try another northern movement. You will see the necessity of keeping your main force far enough north to move down on him on either route. I agree with you that it will be his safest way to approach on south side of White River to Forsyth, and, therefore, he is most likely to come up that way. If he does, he should be attacked at the river and in the defiles this side, if he does succeed in crossing to this side.

SAML. R. CURTIS,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SAINT LOUIS DISTRICT,

Saint Louis, Mo., March 16, 1863.

Major H. Z. CURTIS,

Adjutant-General, Department of the Missouri:

MAJOR: The accompanying dispatch is respectfully inclosed for the general.

McNeil will have, or ought to have, to-day 2,500 men at Bloomfield; so I see no occasion for his stampede. He is ordered to throw up a redoubt, fell abatis, put his guns in position, and hold Bloomfield against Marmaduke's ragamuffins. I apprehend no other result but success for him, as at present strengthened.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. W. DAVIDSON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

P. S.-There is a regiment of infantry at Girardeau, and Waring's regiment of cavalry is on its way now to McNeil.