BIG BLACK BRIDGE, May 13, 1863.
President JEFFERSON DAVIS:
I appreciate all your kindness, and will endeavor to profit by your advice. I think, however, but little reliance can be placed on the kind of assistance you refer to. My forces are very inadequate. Port Hudson is again threatened, and I have been forced to draw largely from there. Enemy continues to re-enforce heavily.
J. C. PEMBERTON.
JACKSON, May 13,* 1863-8. 40 p. m.
I have lately arrived, and learn that Major-General Sherman is between us, with four DIVISIONS, at Clinton. It is important to re-establish communications, that you may be re-enforced. If practicable, come up on his rear at once. To beat such a detachment, would be of immense value. The troops here could co-operate. All the strength you can quickly assemble should be brought. Time is all-important.
Your obedient servant,
J. E. Johnston.
Received between 9 and 10 a. m., May 14, while en route from Bovina to army at Edwards Depot.
J. C. PEMBERTON.
JACKSON, May 13, 1863.
Lieutenant-General PEMBERTON, Bovina:
Nothing definite from General Gregg as to who made attack. Reported that Gregg made attack, and had decided advantage for awhile; that enemy received large re-enforcements, and forced him to fall back. He is just this side of Mississippi Springs. Sent forward from here this morning one battery and a battalion. General Gregg's loss about 400, principally wounded.
EDWARD DEPOT, May 13, 1863.
Telegraphed Adams, in Jackson, this morning for news of enemy in the neighborhood of Raymond, and received the following answer:
JACKSON, May 13, [1863.]
General LORING, Edwards Depot:
General Gregg at Mississippi Springs. Enemy thought to be advancing from Raymond on the Springs in force; ascertained from prisoners and otherwise to be very large, from 30,000 to 40,000, consisting of two army corps, General McPherson in command. Probable that the telegraph wires will soon be cut. I am sending forward one battery-all that is here. Last arrival of troops here was the Thirtieth Georgia, which has arrived at Mississippi Springs. The next troops will be here this evening at 5 o'clock. Will be pushed forward as fast as possible. Prisoners state that General Sherman has crossed Big Black. I derived this information from Gregg at 10 o'clock.
[W. W. LORING.]
*Another copy in the Pemberton papers is dated May 14.