HDQRS. 4TH DIV., 16TH ARMY CORPS, Numbers 44.
In the Field, near Clinton, MISS., July 9, 1863.
I. In obedience to orders from headquarters Thirteenth Army Corps, this DIVISION, together with Generals Benton and Hovey, will constitute a reserve, and will be put in motion to-morrow morning at 7 o'clock.
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W. H. F. RANDALL,
SAULSBURY, July 9, 1863.
R. K. RANDOLPH, Lieutenant and Actg. Asst. Adjutant-GENERAL:
I sent a company of cavalry to Bolivar yesterday. They went in the immediate neighborhood of the place, and report that no rebel force was there; did not meet with any rebels. I saw a man to-day who passed through Jackson on Monday evening last, when he found the place occupied by a rebel force, under Colonel Biffle, 1,800 strong,
JOHN I. RINAKER,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE,
Vicksburg, MISS., July 10, 1863.
Major General N. P. BANKS, Comdg. Department of the Gulf:
GENERAL: I send Major General F. J. Herron to Port Hudson, with the available infantry force of his DIVISION. I feel confident that Port Hudson will be in your possession before the troops reach you, but learning of the position of General Taylor's forces, I did not know but you might want to make a prompt movement to capture him, which could not be done without other forces to make the place of some of yours where they now are.
As I informed you in my letters of the 4th instant, all my surplus troops were held in readiness to move on Johnston the moment Vicksburg fell. They started the same day. I have had no word from them since yesterday morning. At that time General Sherman was at Clinton, 7 miles from Jackson. His advance had slight skirmishing with the enemy's cavalry, but nothing further at that time. Sherman will give Johnston no rest on this side of Pearl River. With the exception of cleaning out Kirby Smith's forces, on the WEST side of the Mississippi River, I have but little idea of what is next to be done with our western forces. Hope to have instructions from Washington, however.
On the 4th of July, General Prentiss was attacked at Helena by Holmes, Price, M. M. Parsons, and Marmaduke, with a force vastly superior to his own, numerically. General Prentiss writes me that his loss will not exceed 250, killed, wounded, and MISSING. They had picked up about 300 of the enemy dead, and had captured 1,000 prisoners. He says, further, that at every house and every road that his troops go they find wounded men left by the enemy.
I received a telegram from the general superintendent of telegraphs, at Washington, of the 5th of July, stating that Meade had whipped Lee badly, and that the latter was retreating and Meade in full pursuit.
The troops I send you, general, leave behind their baggage, hospitals, and artillery. I hope you will send them back as soon as their services