War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0391 Chapter XXXVIII. OPERATIONS IN THE TECHE COUNTRY. LA.

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left, not having the Big Cane road to guard. I have just received another communication from General Magruder, urging me to move at once to Niblett's Bluff. He thinks a large force is at Ship Island, to co- operate with the expediting in my front. Ord, who was at Shop Island, is with the army her, and I think no movement on Texas is possible. My pickets are still up to Washington, where the enemy have now a very heavy force.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. TAYLOR,

Major- General.

Brigadier General W. R. BOGGS,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF WESTERN LOUISIANA,

Opelousas, November 4, 1863.

GENERAL: The enemy in my front are retreating to Berwick Bay. Yesterday we overtook their rear guard 9 miles below this place, and defeated them completely, capturing one gun and some 600 prisoners. It was a portion of the Thirteenth Corps, from Vicksburg. I have just received positive information from New Orleans that an expedition of some 5,000 men is near the Balize, in the river, with Banks in person in command. The last rumors point to Mobile as the objective point, to relieve Rosecrans, but I have nothing but rumors. The expedition to Texas by land is abandoned, and you, of course, can judge what point of Western Texas is most likely to be attacked. The vessels at the Balize are all sea transports.

Your obedient servant,

R. TAYLOR,

Major- General.

Major General J. B. MAGRUDER,

Commanding Texas, &c.

SHREVEPORT, LA.,

November 7, 1863.

We take the following from the Caddo Gazette Extra, November 7, 1863:

The following official letter from General Taylor to General Boggs has been given us for publication:

WASHINGTON, LA.,

"November 5, [1863]

"GENERAL: In my previous report, I had the honor to inform you that, learning of the enemy's movements in retreat, General [Thomas] Green, with his division of cavalry and three regiments of infantry, was ordered to pursue and harass the retreat. "On the 2d, the enemy withdrew from Opelousas, Colonel [J. P.] Major, with his brigade, skirmishing briskly with the enemy all day and delaying his movements. Late in the day, General Green pursued him with Green's brigade, commanded by Colonel [A. P.] Bagby, and the three regiments of infantry, with the Valverde Battery. General Green made his preparations for attacking the following morning. The enemy's rear guard was encamped on the Bourbeau, 7 miles below Opelousas.

"Green attacked with his usual energy; captured one Parrot gun, their camp, with all its contents, and over 600 prisoners, including 2 colonels, 1 lieutenant- colonel, 10 captains, and 17 lieutenants. After routing the enemy and holding his camp for two hours, heavy re- enforcements, under [W. B.] Franklin, came up, and forced Green to withdraw to the vicinity of Opelousas, which he did, bringing off the gun and prisoners. The force engaged and whipped proved to be Washburn's division