between Monticello and Albany, say, 4,000 men in all. The attack of Colonel Riley was very creditable, and I hope to hear from Colonel Jacob before morning.
A. E. BURNSIDE,
Cincinnati, April 20, 1863-10.35 a.m.
General HORATIO G. WRIGHT:
Say to Colonel Jacob that if he feels that he can cross at or near of the enemy early to-morrow morning, I will order the force at Somerset, some 1,500 men, to cross at the same time and attack him in front. It would not be right, at this distance and with the limited information I have, to issue a peremptory order for a crossing, which should depend upon the nature of the fords the strength of the position of the enemy, and the route through which our forces would have to pass to attack them. I have, therefore, determined to leave the discretion with the commanding officer in front, simply saying that, whilst it is very desirable that the force in and about Monticello should be captured or scattered, it would be very unfortunate, in view of other movements that I am contemplating, to have our forces meet with any serious reverse just at this time. If Colonel Jacob decides to cross to-morrow morning at daylight, he should at once send a messenger to the telegraph office at Columbia, to forward the dispatch to you, in order that General Willcox may order the force in the neighborhood of Somerset to cross at the same time. Please hurry this to the front, in order that we may get the message back by night. In case he decides not to cross the river, the main body can return to Columbia, with strong advance posts and pickets in the direction of Jamestown, Creelsborough, and Burkesville.
A. E. BURNSIDE,
Major-General, Commanding Department.
LEXINGTON, KY., April 20, 1863-3.15 p.m.
The following meets with my approval. I would recommend, in addition, that Wright's forces co-operate below:
From Wolford's dispatches, I find he does not deem it advisable to cross the river with his present force.
Will it not be well for me to have Gilbert move the Forty-fourth and One hundred and fourth from Mount Vernon to Somerset, while I take the Second Tennessee and Twenty-seventh New Jersey to same place, together with Wilder Battery, and drive rebels from Wayne County? When Gilbert moves, I will send the One hundred and third Ohio from this to Mount Vernon. This movement can be made if I can gather rations and forage here in a day or two. If successful, all the troops, except a small force, should return here, owing to difficulties in supplying forage and rations at Somerset. This movement, I think,m is entirely practicable; whether advisable, therefore, [before] a general advance is to be made, I leave with you to determine.
O. B. WILLCOX,