War of the Rebellion: Serial 035 Page 0875 Chapter XXXV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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the Salt-Works from the valley. Your plan seems to me to be a good one, though I am inclined to think from the peculiar formation of the valley that the works would better command the valley if one or both flanks were pierced for field guns. One gun would, I think, be enough for the truncated salient, and one for each face. Those details, however, could be best arranged by the engineer charged with the construction of the works.

I wrote to the Secretary of War yesterday, expressing my conviction that a force of 800 or 1,000 men, including at least one company of cavalry, should be designated and assigned to the permanent occupation and defense of the Salt-Works. It should be commanded by an intelligent and determined officer, who understands the use of the three arms of service, and he should have at least eight or ten pieces of artillery in position.

Such an arrangement would give you and me, or whoever may here-after command the Departments of East Tennessee and Western Virginia, greater freedom of action than we now have. A force such as I have indicated ought to hold the Salt-Works against three times their number of raiders.

If you can concur with me in opinion on that point, I would suggest that you write to the Secretary of War on the subject. Whatever is done should be done quickly. I wish you would send as soon as practicable to Saltville four of the best field guns you can spare for Captain Lowry's battery. You mentioned to me in Richmond that you could send him some.

Very respectfully and truly, &c.,

SAM. JONES,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA, Dublin, June 16, 1863.

Major General S. B. BUCKNER,

Commanding, &c., Knoxville, Tenn.:

GENERAL: I have found it necessary to move my troops, with the exception of one field battery, from Glade Spring. One large fine regiment of infantry will be on the railroad, near place, and, if any necessity arises, can a few hours be thrown to Saltville or any other point where it may be needed. The field battery left at Galade Spring will be available for service at Saltville, and subject to General Williams' orders until his own brigade battery is provided with larger and better guns.

I received information yesterday of the movements of two mounted and two infantry regiments from Catlettsburg on the 4th instant. It was supposed they were moving on the Salt-Works. I presume it is the same party of which General Preston telegraphed you on the 10th.

There seems good ground for believing that Burnside's division or corps, or a large part of it, has been sent to Mississippi. If so, I think you need not apprehend any invasion of East Tennessee on a large scale. The Cincinnati Commercial of the 10th, which I have, reports the enemy driving Pegram back from Monticello on the 9th instant. Is there any truth in the report?

Very respectfully and truly, &c.,

SAM. JONES,

Major-General.