you and get your views in regard to the defenses and obstructions of the river. Whatever is done must be pushed with all the resources of the district, and should be completed before the rise in Red River this winter.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
E. KIRBY SMITH,
Alexandria Trans-Mississippi Department:
GENERAL: I shall startle you with the declaration that the whole population of Louisiana, white and black, will be without meat-food in half a month. I am remiss in not calling your attention to this subject before, but I must do it the more earnestly on that account. The cause of the famine of meat is the enforcement of a military order emanating from some officer in Texas (but whether from General Magruder or not, I cannot now say), which prohibits any beeves being sent to this State except to the army. The plantations are in a majority of cases out of meat already. I myself am as careful in provisioning my plantations as most persons, and I shall be out in a few days. You can imagine what our condition will be, with our numerous slaves living on meal and molasses for many weeks before the requisite orders can be issued from your headquarters and be put in course of execution.
I do not know what military precaution suggested the propriety of such an order. At first we attributed our scarcity, which has been a subject of anxiety for some time, to the indisposition of the Texas grazier to exchanging beef for Confederate money. It appears subsequently, however, to have been the result of military orders.
If it is deemed imprudent by reason of the attitude of the enemy below that the beeves shall be sent so near the enemy's lines, I suggest that the drovers be restricted to selling them above a certain place or line, to be designated by you.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THO. O. MOORE.
P. S.-I presume the order alluded to was issued previous to the fall of Vicksburg and Port Hudson.
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,
Shreveport, La., October 21, 1863.
GENERAL: Your note of the 16th instant has been received by the lieutenant-general commanding. He directs me to say that he had previously received a communication from you, stating that Colonel Bankhead had been relieved from command of his brigade by General GaNumbers An order has been published for Colonel Bankhead to report to you without delay. Intelligence from General Taylor, since the date of your letter, puts the enemy still at Vermillionville. They have not moved in force in the direction of Texas.
I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant, and Aide-de-Camp.