not better send it down Crowley's Ridge, threaten Jacksonport, and attack the scattered cavalry with two or three regiments of infantry, or send them down the river?
J. M. SCHOFIELD.
NEW MADRID, MO., June 23, 1863.
Captain H. C. FILLEBROWN,
Asst. Adjt. General, District of Southeastern Missouri:
SIR: I have the honor to report that I arrived at this post early this morning, and shall assume the command to-morrow. As far as practicable, I have examined the works and the approaches to them. For several miles up and down the river bank the site for batteries is the same. The enemy need not attack us in order to blockade the river. He could throw up sufficiently strong works in one-night to give us considerable trouble in dislodging him, and to hold temporary control of the navigation. There is nothing in the town of New Madrid itself to make it an object of temptation to the enemy or ourselves. There are two forts and quite an extensive line of rifle-pits around them. The upper fort is in a very dilapidated condition, almost ruined; there are no guns in it. It is something over a mile from the lower fort, which is in comparatively good order, and is a much stronger work than the other ever was. There are three 24-pounders mounted, one dismounted which can be mounted, and one which is dismounted, spiked, and the carriage unfit for service. There is also a 12-pounder iron. There were until recently two 20-pounder Parrotts, but these have been sent below. We need two more heavy guns for the platforms.
I propose to destroy the upper fort, or that little there is left of it; complete the exterior defenses of the lower fort by connecting the rifle-pits, and building breastworks for field pieces at proper points in the outer line, as well as to build a magazine, repair the ramparts, &c., of the fort itself.
I find that we are very short of ammunition for the guns. There is no spherical case or canister to speak of, and but little grape and solid shot on hand. I shall send a messenger up to Columbus, by the boat which takes this communication, with a dispatch to Colonel Callender for an immediate supply.
The dispatch boat which was formerly here has been taken by the authorities at Memphis. I have to trust to chance to communicate with any one. No troops have arrived here as yet--6.30 p. m. The place appears to be healthy.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CHESTER HARDING, Jr.,
Colonel Twenty-fifth Missouri Volunteers.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF COLORADO,
Denver City, Colo., June 23, 1863.
Lieutenant Colonel SAMUEL F. TAPPAN,
Commanding Post at Fort Lyon, Colo.:
SIR: Your letters of the 20th instant are received, and I am directed by the colonel commanding to say, in reply, that Colonel Phillips has had re-enforcements sent him, and will not in all probability be defeated nor compelled to surrender. If he is, the rebels will not be permitted to march on Larned. It can and will be re-enforced strongly before the rebels can reach there. The rebels will be much more likely to strike