War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0688 W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., LA., TEX., N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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your boats could enter the Atchafalaya from the Red River, and patrol that river to Berwick Bay, it would effectually cut off any invasion of the enemy from that point. In view of the movements contemplated, it is probable that two or three boats would be sufficient for the purpose indicated, and they would at the same time prevent the incursions of guerrillas on the west bank of the Mississippi as far up as the mouth of Red River. This would be, perhaps, the most effective service to which this small force could be put.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

N. P. BANKS,

Major-General, Commanding.

HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE GULF, NINETEENTH ARMY CORPS,

New Orleans, August 16, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief, U. S. Army:

GENERAL: In the event of the movements contemplated in my dispatch of this date, it will be necessary that the Atchafalaya River and Berwick Bay should be patrolled by light-draught gunboats, to prevent the invasion of the La Fourche district by the enemy. If Admiral Porter can send three of his light-draught tin-clads down the Atchafalaya into Berwick Bay from the Red River, it will effectually accomplish this object, and at the same time prevent the incursion of guerrillas upon the west bank of the Mississippi below the mouth of Red River.

This will be the most effectual service that these boats could possibly render in this quarter. I respectfully, but earnestly, recommend that such an order be given. It is impossible to protect Brashear City and the la Fourche district, except by the aid of gunboats. It was their absence that enabled the enemy to capture Brashear, and to escape across the bay upon our return from Port Hudson.

I have addressed this request to Admiral Porter or the officer commanding the fleet at Vicksburg.

I have the honor to be, &c.,

N. P. BANKS,

Major-General, Commanding.

HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE GULF, NINETEENTH ARMY CORPS,

New Orleans, August 17, 1863.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN,

President of the United States of America:

SIR: From a private note to one of the editors of the Era, I learn that some interest was manifested by you concerning the organization of the negro troops in this department, and especially with reference to General Ullmann's brigade. I have purposely avoided the publication of information respecting the organization of that class of soldiers. General Ullmann has now five regiments nearly completed, numbering about 2,500 men, or 500 to each regiment. I have twenty-one regiments nearly organized, three upon the basis of 1,000 men to each, and eighteen of 500 men, making in all, 10,000 or 12,000 men. There are also batteries of artillery and companies of cavalry in process of organization. These embrace all the material for such regiments that is within my command