War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0286 W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., LA., TEX., N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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Numbers 9.- Captain F. H. Odlum, Cook's (Texas) artillery.

Numbers 10.- Lieutenant R. W. Dowling, Company F, Cook's (Texas) artillery.

Numbers 11.- Thanks of the Confederate Congress to Captain Odlum, Lieutenant Dowling, and the men under their command.

Numbers 1. Reports of Major General Nathaniel P. Banks, U. S. Army, commanding Department of the Gulf.*

NEW ORLEANS, September 5, 1863.

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that Major-General Franklin has sailed on the expedition to Sabine Pass, Tex.

Owing to the limited means of transportation at my disposal in this department, especially of steamers capable of navigating the Gulf of Mexico, the start has been delayed much beyond the time I had hoped and expected, but I believe rumor has been kept entirely at fault, and that the blow will fall on the enemy in a quarter unexpected by them.

Using all our transportation, it has been impossible to send in the first line more than about 5,000 infantry, with three field batteries and two heavy Parrott batteries. Such of the navy gunboats as can enter the Pass were assembled in Berwick Bay, and telegraphic communication having now been established between the Southwest Pass of the Mississippi and Berwick Bay, the sailing of the transports from the one point and the gunboats from the other was made with such interval as to bring the two at the same time, or nearly the same, off Sabine Pass.

As an exposition of the intended operations, I inclose a copy of my instructions to Major-General Franklin. As soon as the first line shall have disembarked, all the transports of light draught will come to Berwick Bay, whither I have ordered the First Division of the Thirteenth Army Corps to be ready for embarkation. Three-fourths of that division are already at a point a few miles distant from Bradhear City. The transports of heavier draught will return to this place, where troops of the Thirteenth Army Corps will be ready to embark.

The day before yesterday, information was sent me by the naval officer in command near Morgan's Bend, on the Mississippi River, that the rebels were establishing there four field batteries to annoy our transports. I have dispatched the Second Division, Thirteenth Army Corps, to that quarter, directing the commander (General Herron) to co-operate with the gunboat, and to capture or destroy the rebel force in that vicinity, which, by various accounts, numbers from 900 to 1,500 men of the three arms.

General Herron will be able to accomplish this object and return in time to take part in the Texas expedition, and will doubtless have returned before transportation will be ready for him.

I have reliable information to-day from Galveston (August 14), which gives the force of Magruder at that point as 2,300 men, in a very demoralized condition. The refugees in highly intelligent, and states that our attack on Texas is expected in the direction of Vermillionville, La., and Niblett's Bluff.

Very respectfully, I am, general, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS,

Major-General, Commanding.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

Commanding U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

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*See also General Reports, pp. 18-21.

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