War of the Rebellion: Serial 038 Page 0121 Chapter XXXVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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desires that you will telegraph him at Cincinnati, and give him authority to seize boats if you judge it expedient. Direct to Burnet House.


Chief Quartermaster.

WASHINGTON, D. C., March 19, 1863.

Colonel ROBERT ALLEN, Saint Louis:

I cannot direct the seizure of steamers on the Ohio River unless in case of absolute necessity, and that necessity must be certified to by the Quartermaster's Department. Where boats can be procured for reasonable hire, violent measures should be avoided. General Grant's last dispatches to me do not indicate any necessity for violent seizures.


MEMPHIS, TENN., March 19, 1863.

Major General B. M. PRENTISS, Comdg. Dist. Eastern Arkansas:

GENERAL: I am now in receipt of your communication. I regret exceedingly that the expedition to the Yazoo Pass is in such a precarious position. I regret very much more my inability to send you the guns and ammunition your require. I have no 8-inch howitzers except at Corinth, and have within the last two days sent to General Grant the only battery of 30-pounder Parrotts in my command.

All the light-draught boats which have been here, and are in condition to run, have been either sent below or are under orders to leave. Carr is now here with two regiments and a battery, and some small boats. I will order him to you at once. You can debark his troops and use his boats. Ross should never have been out of supporting reach, but he is, though, and must be saved, if it be possible. The delay in boats from above is chargeable to other parties, who will hereafter be answerable for it.

I send from the fort here some 24-pounder guns, the best I can do for you, and will have the ammunition forwarded.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


SAINT LOUIS, MO., March 19, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK, General-in-Chief:

General Grant telegraphs, dated the 5th, "I require thirty boats of less than 200 feet in length. They should be here at the earliest possible moment. Use every exertion to procure them. " General Hovey came up repeating this necessity; Colonel Parsons also. The boats cannot be procured here, and on my requisition they will not send them from the Ohio; hence my dispatch of yesterday. I am not the judge of the necessity. I am sending General Rosecrans 700,000 rations, besides a large amount of forage. It cannot be necessary to hold all the Ohio boats on his account.


Chief Quartermaster.

[MARCH 19, 1863. -For Wright to Halleck, and reply, in reference to transports for Grant and Rosecrans, see Series I, VOL. XXIII, Part II, p. 151.]