You are requested to use your influence, said to be great in that section, to quiet the people as much as possible, and relieve their apprehensions on the subject of being deserted. This is a mistaken idea. Get them to see the necessity of arranging matters her first, and say that then in a short time the interest and defense of the west will be consulted.
The general wishes you to take command of all the forces in the west, and regulate matters as well as possible.
Colonel Darden has been directed to report by letter to you as son as he has destroyed the railroad. You had, perhaps, better station some of the State troops near Alligator Head; you will use your judgment.
I am, &c.
EDMUND P. TURNER,
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,
Shreveport, La., December 14, 1863.
Commanding, &c., Houston, Tex.:
GENERAL: The lieutenant-general commanding directs that you do not make any changes of any kind in the organization of Brigadier-General Green's cavalry division. He wishes this command to remain just as it is, as it may be necessary to order it to some point out of your district, and he wishes to have it in a condition to move at any moment. The lieutenant-general commanding directs me to impress this strongly upon you.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. R. BOGGS,
Brigadier-General, and Chief of Staff.
HDQRS. EASTERN SUB-DISTRICT OF TEXAS, Numbers 268.
McNeel's Plantation, December 14, 1863.
* * * * *
V. Colonel R. R. Brown will proceed without delay with his command to Cedar Lake, establishing a camp at that point; he will throw out pickets toward the position occupied by the enemy. He will also scout down the peninsula, and, if possible, capture some of their pickets. He will not take his artillery to the front until a brigade has been constructed over the creek near the mouth of the Caney, by which it can be withdrawn should it be necessary. He will also throw up a work near the mouth of the Caney for protection of his artillery and such rifle-pits as he may deem necessary for his men. As the object of the expedition down the peninsula is to capture as many of the enemy as possible, the manner of executing it is left to Colonel Brown.
VI. Colonel P. N. Luckett will detach Captain Gibson, with one section of his battery, with orders to report without delay to Colonel R. R. Brown, at Cedar Lake, crossing the San Bernard River at Churchill's Ferry. This section will consist of one rifled and one smooth-bore gun. Private Campbell, engineer, will accompany the detail for this section. They will be provided with two days' rations.
By command of Brigadier General James E. Slaughter:
L. G. ALDRICH,