War of the Rebellion: Serial 038 Page 0100 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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I tried in vain to prevent the transfer of Fort Heiman to the Department of the Cumberland, and after the transfer was ordered, on the 3rd of February, I sought to keep at least the garrison for this district, and have it replaced from the Department of the Cumberland. Now the garrison, with ten companies of cavalry and a battery, were taken across the river, and the fort this side of it is abandoned and leveled. I consider Heiman one of the most important points in the range of my district and the strongest position on the Tennessee River, controlling its navigation and the Kentucky and Tennessee State line, and all the country toward Paducah and Columbus, and I would respectfully request to have it returned to my district, that I may reoccupy it, and take in flank or rear any rebel force crossing the State line or the Tennessee.

ASBOTH.

COLUMBUS, KY., march 11, 1863.

Major-General HURLBUT,

Memphis, Tenn.:

Colonel [Henry] Dougherty just telegraphed from Paducah that Forts Henry and Heiman are occupied to-day by the rebels. I requested at once the commander of the navy at Cairo to send a gunboat to Heiman to dislodge them before they can plant batteries, and I will start with a combined brigade as soon as boats arrive from Cairo. Please authorize me to retake Heiman, although in the Department of the Cumberland.

ASBOTH.

CAIRO, ILL., March 11, 1863.

Brigadier-General ASBOTH:

Telegram received. I sent orders yesterday to Smithland for gunboats to ascend the Tennessee River. Have not a boat available to send from here. Am informed that Forty Henry is overflowed.

A. M. PENNOCK,

Fleet Captain and Commandant.

COLUMBUS, KY., March 11, 1863.

Fleet Captain a. m. PENNOCK,

Comdg. Navy at Cairo:

Fort Henry may be overflowed, but not Heiman, and, as officially reported, it is occupied by the rebels. General Sullivan's troops are all withdrawn to Jackson, thereby leaving the way open from Heiman to Paducah or Columbus. It is of the utmost importance to dislodge them quickly. I embark as soon as the boats arrive from Cairo. I would beg you to order the New Era to go up if you have no other gunboats. Please answer, and I will send your order to Captain [Henry A.] Glassford by an express boat.

ASBOTH.

COLUMBUS, KY., March 11, 1863.

Major-General HURLBUT,

Comdg. SIXTEENTH Army Corps, Memphis, Tenn.:

Just received information that General Sullivan withdrew his forces from Huntingdon. If so, I infer that the rebels have crossed at Duck