War of the Rebellion: Serial 035 Page 0256 KY., MID., AND E. TENN., N., ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXXV.

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more than that of all the other generals in the field. I have avoided writing to you on the subject, lest you might misconceive my motives, but as the habit with you seems to be increasing, and is really injuring you in the estimation of the Government, I feel it my duty to you as a personal friend to call your attention to the matter. The truth is, you repeat again the same thing by telegraph, at a very great expense to the Government, without the slightest necessity. For example, you have telegraphed at least a dozen, and, perhaps, twenty times in the last few months that you require more cavalry. The Government is fully aware of your wants, and has been doing all in its power to supply them. It certainly was not necessary to remind it every day and every hour of its duty.

Again, you telegraph continually about matters which require no immediate action or reply, and which might be communicated through the mails without any delay or injury to the public service and with great saving to the public treasury.

The Secretary of War directs me to call your attention particularly to one peculiar feature in your telegrams and reports. You are very particular in mentioning all your successes and all captures from the enemy, but you do not inform the Government of your defeats and losses. These we learn only through the reports of the enemy and your requisitions for re-enforcements and supplies. A moment's reflection will convince you of the impropriety of this course. In order to act understanding the Government should be advised of your losses as well as your gains.

This letter is not written in a spirit of fault-finding, but from a sense of duty to you and to the Government.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,




Murfreesborough, April 20, 1863.

Brigadier General JOHN BEATTY,

Commanding Third Brigadier Second Div., Fourteenth Army Corps:

The general commanding directs you to put your brigade in readiness, and march to-morrow at 2 o'clock, with five days' rations and 100 rounds of ammunition.

Captain Stokes will report to you and accompany you with his battery; also one regiment from Colonel Harker's brigade.

You will proceed toward Nashville, and take a position near Scrougeville, for the purpose of resisting any attempt of the enemy's cavalry to cross Stone's River or to attack Nashville or La Vergne. You will, on the way, consult with Colonel Este, commanding at La Vergne, in regard to the best points to occupy to effect your purpose. It may be policy for you not to retain one position very long, but change from time to time, so as to watch the various avenues of approach, and also deceive the enemy as to your whereabouts and strength. You will neither take your tents nor camp equipage. Report by telegraph from La Vergne anything of importance, and report daily, whether there be any news or not.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.