WASHINGTON, March 20, 1863. -10. 10 a. m.
Colonel ROBERT ALLEN, Saint Louis, Mo.:
General Wright has signified his intention to send to General Grant a part of the boats employed for General Rosecrans' army. Boats will not be taken by force, unless it be found impossible to procure them by other means.
H. W. HALLECK.
SAINT LOUIS, MO., March 20, 1863-2. 50 p. m.
Major General H. W. HALLECK, General-in-Chief:
Colonel Parsons was sent to Cincinnati to procure boats of light draught, but General Wright was unwilling they should leave the department; and owners, taking advantage of the emergency, were demanding exorbitant rates. It was to prevent extortion that authority was asked to seize boats, if necessary. If General Wright will furnish boats, all will be well. We have already provided twenty-six boats of the right size, but this falls short of the number required.
This expedition is so dependent upon its transportation that an insufficiency may prove fatal.
COLLIERVILLE, TENN., March 20, 1863.
Captain H. ATKINSON,
A. A. G., First Div., SIXTEENTH Army Corps, La Grange, Tenn.:
CAPTAIN: I have ordered ambuscade parties from each post in this brigade. The force at my disposal will be entirely inadequate to perform this duty any length of time. I could not with my entire force ambush the approaches once. The whole front is an approach, open to guerrillas, and nearly the whole rear, for that matter.
The Wolf River can be crossed at twenty points on my line by footmen, on fallen trees and drift, and reconnaissance shows that it would be a very heavy work to clear it. Small parties cross often, as footprints show.
To-day at about noon considerable firing was heard on the north side of the river, about midway between this station and La Fayette. I have not been able to learn its cause.
I could quickly rid the front or rear of guerrillas if I might be allowed discretion. These scamps do not travel ordinary roads. They go through farms and over the country, where they are familiar, without regard to path even.
I will make the best disposition possible with the force at my command to comply with this order requiring ambuscades.
I have the honor to be, captain, your obedient servant,
JOHN MASON LOOMIS,
Colonel, Commanding First Brigade.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE, Numbers 79.
Young's Point, La., March 20, 1863.
I. Brigadier General E. A. Carr, with the forces under his command, en route from the Department of the Missouri to this place, will debark his com-