War of the Rebellion: Serial 035 Page 0146 KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXXV.

Search Civil War Official Records

The true system undoubtedly is to combine with the defensive an offensive policy of raids, which shall annoy and distract the enemy. For this the present force is insufficient, as, indeed, it is insufficient for the protection and quiet of the State al all, except during the season of bad roads and high rivers. An addition of 10,000 men would probably make this system of operation practicable, and they should be sent promptly, as already recommended.

What is, however, wanting, in my judgement, taking into consideration not only the condition of Kentucky, but also the necessities of the armies in advance, is a large reserve force of some 50,000 men located within the State, to secure its quiet and to provide a force from which the armies in front may draw their needful re-enforcements. No better location than Kentucky can be found for such a camp, which may combine with its duties in the defense of the State that of a camp of instruction, from which may be sent from time to time expeditions against the flanks and rear of the enemy. I would, therefore, earnestly advise the prompt establishment of such a camp at the earliest day. It will be and excellent school for the conscripts to be raised under the late law, from which they may be sent to the field prepared to render good service as soldiers.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. G. WRIGHT.

MARCH 17, 1863.

P. S.-Since commencing the above, my telegram to you recommending the assignment of some other officer to the command of the department has been sent. The completion of this communication has been delayed somewhat on account of other and pressing calls upon my time.

MURFREESBOROUGH, TENN.,

March 16, 1863-9 p. m.

His Excellency ABRAHAM LINCOLN,

President of the United States:

The Secretary of War telegraphed after the battle of Stone's River: "Anything you and your command want you can have." I asked that paymasters, like other staff officers, should serve with he troops in the field. It was not granted. I then asked as a personal favor that my commission should date from December, 1861. It was not granted. I then asked that Major Larned, chief paymaster of this department, might be left here, and not removed, as I have reason to believe he has been, to gratify the spleen of Colonel Andrews, who hates him on account of his dislike of the old Colonel Larned. That was refused. When I asked that the major might stay to expedite the payment of the troops, Major Terrell being then sick, that was not granted. Now I find an aide has been appointed, whom, having once recommended, I requested not to be appointed, because he went ff on a spare the very night after I told him I had recommended him, hoping that he would at least quit drinking.

After telegraphing the withdrawal, and explaining to his brother-in-law, Colonel Donn Piatt, the reason, I nominated R. S. Thomas, esq., a young lawyer of Cincinnati, who, paying his own way, served at the battle of Stone's River with as much gallantry and effect as any one of the staff. This request was disregarded, and an aide appointed in spite