When Colonel Greene and Captain Brown arrive, I desire Greene's regiment reorganized.
I wish Colonel Kitchen, Majors Dunn, Rainwater, and [G. D.] Page to read this letter in order that they may fully understand my movements and plans, and determine what is best in their several departments, and act accordingly.
I have ordered Shelby to march via Washington to this place; that at Washington, Dunn will have arrangements to get his breadstuffs to this place.
All my courier lines should be withdrawn. Warren is about 52 miles from here, nearly east, in a rich country, and 3 miles from the Saline River.
J. S. MARMADUKE,
P. S.-If the Washita cannot be crossed above the Little Missouri, and the Little Missouri cannot be crossed at Tate's Bluff, the command will have to cross at Tate's Ferry, which is 10 miles above Tate's Bluff.
RICHMOND, December 28, 1863.
SIR: Since I arrived here I have been intending to have a long talk with you touching affairs in the Trans-Mississippi Department, but my engagements have prevented me from seeing you at such times as you were at leisure, and as I may not have an opportunity of laying my views before you personally, I have concluded to write you, that you may consider what I have to say at your own convenience.
I believe a pretty thorough reorganization of our army there would be productive of good results. Both Generals Holmes and Price have their friends and their enemies there; but they themselves do not agree, and, as is well known, do not get on in harmony and good feeling. The good of the service, then, requires the removal at least of one or the other of these generals. Which one ought to be removed I will not undertake to say at all. I would suggest that the general commanding the department say which one should be removed. No one is presumed to know better than he which would serve best there, and which could be best spared from that service. Neither one nor the friends of either could murmur at this course. It is fair and just, and I think would be concurred in by all. This being done, send General Hood, when he is ready for duty, there is the place of the one removed. Or,if this cannot be done, make General Fagan a major-general, and place him in command of a division. He stand deservedly high there, as all will tell you who know him and who are acquainted with his services there or elsewhere during this war.
Urge upon the general commanding to concentrate his troops at some point, so that they could meet a heavy force of the enemy successfully. Scattered as these troops are, and have been for some time, I dare say they are of but little service to the country. It occurs to me they had better be brought together to increase their efficiency, even if by so doing more territory had to be abandoned.
Recommend to Congress the passage of a law providing for a commission, to be organized there, to get up, audit, and have paid all the accounts held by persons in that department for guns, food supplies, &c., furnished by them to the Government, and for which no provision now