War of the Rebellion: Serial 042 Page 0107 Chapter XXXVIII. CORRESPONDENCE,ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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The line you propose from Vermillionville to Niblett's Bluff is a good one for operations, but I hope, even in the event of disaster at Vicksburg, that you have no intention of withdrawing your force into Texas. This would be to abandon at once the Red River bottom, which is too rich a source of supply to be thus yielded, and cut our line of retreat from Arkansas. I think Natchitoches or Shreveport should be our points of concentration,and I have ordered supplies placed in depots, that troops may be readily removed when necessary from Arkansas in that direction. I shall order Walker's division to you whenever operations about Vicksburg will permit.

You had given me no notice of your intention of being at Alexandria, or I would have met you there. It is not mentioned in any of your letters. At the time of the receipt of General Elgee's letter, referred to, the report of your operations in Berwick Bay arrived. You were then moving to effect a junction with Colonel Major for further operations in the La Fourche country.

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

E. KIRBY SMITH,

Lieutenant-General.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, Corpus Christi, July 9, 1863.

Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Houston, Tex.:

SIR: The communications of July up to the 4th, inclusive,from your headquarters are at hand. I will not lose a moment in proceeding to Brownsville, and have forwarded to Major Russell the necessary instructions, that there may be no delay. I go forward to obey the orders of my general,but I must be permitted to place on record my regret that this disagreeable duty had not been assigned to an officer of less ran, who could have discharged it equally as well, I have been so unfortunate as to have been required to carry out all previous orders about cotton,and have not failed to receive my portion of slander and abuse,and I had hoped that I was in future clear of it. I anticipate great difficulties in accomplishing the wishes of Lieutenant-General Smith, but will secure the arms, if they come, at all hazards, and will keep you advised regularly of what transpires.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. P. BEE,

Brigadier-General, Provisional Army.

HEADQUARTERS NORTHERN SUB-DISTRICT, Bonham, Tex., July 9, 1863.

Captain EDMUND P. TURNER,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Houston, Tex.:

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report my arrival at this place on the 7th instant. Gurley's regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel [N. W.] Battle, reached here yesterday.

Because of the scarcity of water in this neighborhood, I have established the encampment at Warren, 15 miles from this place, where I have an abundance of water and grass. I observe that sic companies of Texas State troops (infantry) are assigned to my brigade. Be good enough to inform me where they are, and under whose command, so that