all below there, except for Government, without special authority, are liable to seizure. I wish you would refer this matter to the provost-marshal for investigation.
I have seen your General Orders, Number 4, February 8, prohibiting the circulation of the Chicago Times within your command. There is no doubt but that paper, with several others published in the North, should have been suppressed long since by authority from Washington. As this has not been done, I doubt the property of suppressing its circulation in any one command. The paper would still find its way into the hands of the enemy, through other channels, and do all the mischief it is now doing.
This course is also calculated to give the paper a notoriety evidently sought, and which probably would increase the sale of it. I would direct, therefore, that General Orders, Number 4, be revoked.
Information which I have just received and which undoubted, shows that Van Dorn, with his force, went over to the Mobile road, to Okolona. Price is at Grenada with 6,000 or 7,000 men only. North of that point there is no large force on the Mississippi Central Railroad. Our cavalry can go to the Tallahatchee without difficulty. The enemy have not got the road repaired yet north of Water Valley. I would like to have the road destroyed as much as possible south of Holly Springs.
It seems to me that Grierson, with about 500 picked men, might succeed in making his way south, and cut the railroad east of Jackson, MISS. The undertaking would be a hazardous one, but it would pay well if carried out. I do not direct that this shall be done, but leave it for a volunteer enterprise.
General Hamilton countermanded or suspended an order of mine directing the sale of some captured cotton. I wrote to him saying that the sale should proceed. I wish you would direct Captain Eddy, if he has not already done so, to proceed in accordance with my order in this matter.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT.
HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Memphis, Tenn., February 13, 1863.
U. S. Navy, Cairo:
It is of great importanc be sent up the Tennessee as far as Florence or Eastport, if possible. Van Dorn is moving on that point, but has been delayed by our cavalry.
S. A. HURLBUT.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT MILITARY COMMISSION,*
Memphis, February 13, 1863.
GENERAL: This commission entered upon its duties with a firm determination to perform them solely for the good of the country and the honor of the army with which we are connected, and not to gratify the malignant, vicious, or depraved, and to punish those offenses brought to our knowledge, no matter by whom committed. In the progress of our investigations we are perfectly satisfied that there is the most barefaced villainy being practiced in the detective department.
*For orders creating commission, see p. 1067.