War of the Rebellion: Serial 038 Page 0969 Chapter XXXVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -CONFEDERATE.

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with, should you have need of them. One of the best, General R. S. Ripley, is at present on bad terms with my chief of staff, Brigadier- General Jordan, and, I believe, is not satisfied with my system and rule. He is and old brigadier, and an excellent officer in the field; he, no doubt, could be of much use to you for the command of a DIVISION. He had one under Lee in Virginia, and was wounded at Sharpsburg. Should you require his services, apply to me for him. I will approve the application, and send it on to the War Department. It would be advisable, I think, not to mention therein that it is done at my suggestion, for it might not then be granted. I wish I could go on myself to assist you, but it can be done only under the contingency I have already communicated to you. I have no doubt of your success, however, should you have the proper means at your command.

Yours, very truly.


Vicksburg, June 21, 1863.

General Johnston:

Your dispatches of the 14th and 16th received. If it is absolutely impossible, in your opinion, to raise the siege with our combined forces, and that nothing more can be done than to extricate the garrison, I suggest that, giving me full information in time to act, you move by the north of the railroad, drive in the enemy's pickets at night, and at daylight next morning engage him heavily with skirmishers, occupying him during the entire day, and that on that night I move by the Warrenton road, by Hankinson's Ferry, to which point you should previously send a brigade of cavalry, with two field batteries, to build a bridge there, and hold that ferry; also Hall's and Baldwin's, to cover my crossing at Hankinson's. I shall not be able to move with my artillery or wagons. I suggest this as the best plan, because all the other roads are too strongly intrenched and the enemy in too heavy force for a reasonable prospect of success, unless you move in sufficient force to compel him to abandon his communications with Snyder's, which I still hope we may be able to do. I await your orders. Captain [J. M.] Couper understands all my views, and will explain further.

J. C


Major A. P. MASON, Assistant Adjutant-GENERAL:

MAJOR: Inclosed I send communication per flag of truce, and respectfully ask for special instructions in regard to the Federal hospitals now inside our lines. * The truce party has been halted at the outposts, and are now there, awaiting the decision of the general commanding in regard to their case.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


JACKSON, MISS., June 21, 1863.

Colonel JOSEPH [R.] DAVIS, Mississippi:

I was most anxious to see you this morning, to put you in possession as fully as possible with the actual situation in this department. Your


* See Grant to commanding officer of Confederate forces, &c., June 19, p. 419.