War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0346 W. FLA.,S. ALA.,S. MISS.,LA.,TEX.,N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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fight any large cavalry movement in my rear, you will see by an examination of the map that if the enemy get between me and New Iberia in force, it will embarrass me much to fight them. There are rumors of Magruder and Price re-enforcing in front of me, and although I do not credit them, I nevertheless believe that the enemy is yet stronger than he has been. I only fear him in my rear. My position here is good against double my number. Rifle-pits and abatis make me entirely safe in front, but my rear is exceedingly weak.

W. B. FRANKLIN,

Major-General, Commanding.

Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE,

Chief of Staff, New Orleans, La.

NEW IBERIA, LA.,

November 17, 1863-11.30 a. m.

I left Vermillion yesterday morning at daylight, and encamped at Camp Pratt. I came from there here this morning. I destroyed the Vermillion Bridge. The enemy made no show of opposition to our crossing. One or two mounted men came to the bayou, and fired on us after we were over.

W. B. FRANKLIN,

Major-General, Commanding Troops in the Field.

Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE,

Chief of Staff, New Orleans, La.

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN THE FIELD,

New Iberia, November 18, 1863-1.30 p. m.

Have received your dispatch referring to Green's movement. It, of course, may be so, but there is, nevertheless, quite a large cavalry force of the enemy at Camp Pratt. They drove in a force of 250 of our cavalry, sent there to reconnoiter, this morning. I have the cavalry out in all directions now. The officer in command of the Camp Pratt expedition estimates what he saw there at 600, and others were coming up from Vermillion with great dust. However, it is very dusty, and a small force, judged by the dust, looks large.

W. B. FRANKLIN,

Major-General, Commanding.

Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE,

Chief of Staff, New Orleans, La.

HEADQUARTERS TROOPS IN THE FIELD,

New Iberia, November 20, 1863-8 a. m.

I have just heard from General Lee. He surprised the enemy at Camp Pratt, finding there the Seventh Texas [Cavalry], Colonel [A. P.] Bagby. He has taken 100 prisoners, killed and wounded several, and our loss is nothing, he thinks. It is his impression that this is and advanced post of a force at Vermillion. Until he comes in, I cannot tell upon what he bases that supposition.

W. B. FRANKLIN,

Major-General, Commanding.

Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE,

Chief of Staff, New Orleans, La.