the point. The forward movement reported by Colonel Smith is so like that made all along my front on Wednesday and Thursday that it reminds me of the young bird trying his wings before he finally leaves the nest. He seems to be feeling us all along our front, and I suppose we shall know before many days what his purposes are.
I thank you for the reports of the enemy's corps commanders; they tell the whole story as satisfactorily as we could desire, considering it comes from the other side.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, March 8, 1863.
Beg leave to urge most respectfully, but earnestly, the early assemblage of a court-martial for the trial of a fellow-citizen, Major-General McCown, who, we understand, is now under arrest upon certain charges recently preferred against him. There is no doubt, we apprehend, that this meritorious officer desires the earliest possible examination of his case, and we venture to give assurance that no expedients of any kind will be resorted to by General McCown for the postponement of proceedings in his case or for an needless delay in bringing on the scrutiny of his official conduct which has been challenged. We understand that General Joseph E. Johnston has recommended an early examination of this case, and we cordially concur in his action on this subject.
H. S. FOOTE.
G. A. HENRY.
P. S.-Since signing the above, I have received a letter from General McCown, at Chattanooga, who is exceedingly anxious to be brought to trial on the charges against him. He authorizes me to say he waives any exception to the rank of officers who may be ordered on the court for his trial. He seems to be very much the favorite of his division, if I may judge from the paper I had the honor to send you on yesterday, in which the general and field officers of his division united in his recommendation for promotion.
With great respect, I remain, as ever, your friend and obedient servant,
G. A. HENRY.
CHATTANOOGA, March 8, 1863.
General S. COOPER:
SIR: I have the honor to receive [letter], by which you inform me that I have authority to order a general court-martial in the case of Major-General McCown. General Bragg, who is the accuser in this case, commands the department to which the accused belongs. By law, when a general commanding an army or separate department shall be the accuser of any officer under his command, the general court-martial for the trial of such officer shall be appointed by the President. This law seeming to me too plain and positive to admit of doubt, I forwarded the papers in the case to your office as soon as they were received.
Most respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. E. JOHNSTON,
43 R R-VOL XXIII, PT II