War of the Rebellion: Serial 052 Page 0064 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA.

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[CHAP. XLII.

DANVILLE, KY., August 17, 1863.

(Received 3.15 p.m.)

ABRAHAM LINCOLN,

President United States:

Regarding the construction of a railroad in the direction of Knoxville as a great military necessity and of the greatest importance to the Government, I have ordered General Boyle to impress 8,000 negro laborers to construct the road. A large portion of the laborers have been impressed, and the work will commence immediately, the people contributing the labor cheerfully

acquiescing. Indeed, they are urgent and anxious to furnish the labor as a general thing.

The road can be completed to Somerset in from three to five months. I have ordered General Boyle to press the work to completion at the earliest possible moment. By proposition of railroad company all expenditures for labor, material,&c., can be reimbursed to the Government and people and paid for by the companies. By arrangement made the railroad will be prepared for the iron, and I take it for granted you will authorize the purchase of the iron at the proper time.

The iron also can be paid for by the company, when the Government shall have done using the road. A large portion of the road has been surveyed and located, and the remainder is being rapidly done. The working parties go on at once. I trust my action in this matter will meet your approval. I go to Crab Orchard to-night, and will be there till to-morrow noon.

A. E. BURNSIDE,

Major-General.

CINCINNATI, August 17, 1863.

Major-General BURNSIDE,

Danville, Ky.:

The following has just been received from General Willcox from Detroit:

The Michigan Sharpshooters left for Chicago last night. They had been ordered there on application of authority here, which was confirmed by General Burnside. Senator Howard now remonstrates against their removal, on the plea that the city is threatened by mob spirit.

I will see about the matter. I ordered the sharpshooters to Camp Douglas, as directed in Colonel Richmond's telegrams of the 14th.

W. P. ANDERSON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

CINCINNATI, August 17, 1863.

Major-General BURNSIDE,

Stanford, Ky.:

The conduct of the Thirty-fifth Massachusetts and Fifty-first New York was disgraceful while encamped near Covington. The Thirty-fifth Massachusetts deliberately forced a guard stationed to prefect private property. Can I direct General Parke to make the guilty parties pay for the property destroyed, and court-martial the men connected in forcing the guard?

W. P. ANDERSON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.