War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0716 W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., LA., TEX., N. MEX. Chapter XXXVIII.

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there is not now more than 3 feet; but we can overcome this by lightening our vessels.

The admiral contemplates a secret expedition up the Red and Black Rivers, which will cut off any rebel transports destined for the Atchafalaya. This river is now divided into districts, under the control of regular naval officers. Lieutenant Commander J. P. Foster commands the second division, within which lies the threatened district you mention. There are at present a considerable number of gunboats in the vicinity of Red River, so that a diversion of the enemy in that vicinity should be productive of little harm.

Our intelligence from Arkansas represents Price as ready to give battle behind intrenchments on the Bayou Meto, some 15 miles from Little Rock. His force is generally estimated at about 18,000 men and twenty-sick pieces of artillery. His army, however, is not in a good fighting condition, his men constantly deserting. Our largely superior force of cavalry, under Daviedson, harasses them extremely. General Steele is very confident of the final result, and was moving for the attack some three days ago. His force numbers about the same as the enemy, but greatly superior in artillery. Steele's bass of operations is Devall's Bluff, on the White River, about 45 miles from Little Rock, his supplies being brought up the river about 120 miles. This service at present employs four light-draught gunboats. It would give more expedition were all communications addressed directly to Admiral Porter or the commanding officer at Vicksburg.

I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your obedient servant,

THOS. O. SELFRIDGE,

Lieutenant-Commander, U. S. Navy.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,

New Orleans, September 4, 1863.

Major General F. J. HERRON,

Commanding Second Div., Thirteenth Army Corps, Carrolton:

GENERAL: It is officially reported by the commander of the gunboat Neosho that a rebel force, numbering at least 900 men, is now at Morgan's Bend, on the Mississippi River, establishing four batteries of field artillery, for the purpose of annoying our transports.

You will please proceed with your division to a point some 10 miles below that occupied by the enemy, and sending thence notice of your presence for co-operation to the naval commander now watching that position as to the best beans of capturing or destroying the rebel force there. You will carry this out with all possible dispatch.

Having accomplished this object, you will return to your present position, and report to the commander of the Thirteenth Army Corps for duty, reporting the result of your expedition to these headquarters.

[CHAS. P. STONE,]

Brigadier-General, and Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,

New Orleans, September 5, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

GENERAL: The inclosed memoranda embrace the chief points of information which have been received from Mississippi in relation to