flocking in by the hundred. I would like to have the privilege of sending a provost-marshal and two companies to Benton and the same to Cleveland. I think I could do a great deal of benefit to the service by so doing. I will send a detachment to Cleveland to-morrow or next day to scout, unless I receive orders to the contrary, and will leave a part at each place with a provost-marshal.
I have sworn in, in the last three days, 462. Three hundred and sixty-two of these were soldiers. I have in custody the president and several of the directors of the State Bank of Tennessee at this place, holding them responsible for the bank funds.
R. K. BYRD,
HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Helena, Ark., September 15, 1863.
Major General JAMES B. McPHERSON,
Comdg. 17th Army Corps, Dept. of the Tennessee:
GENERAL: I have the honor to report my arrival last evening, but all the boats will not be here until this afternoon. From dispatches received here last evening via White River, General Steele occupies Little Rock, Ark. General. Davidson is pursuing the enemy.
They made, it seems, very little defense. Price, as usual, sticks to the old adage, "He who fights and runs away," &c. I have not been able to learn any particulars except that there were about 500 prisoners taken. I did not find any instructions here, nor can I learn that I was expected, previous to the arrival of General Stevenson on the 13th instant.
I shall move out in the direction of Devall's Bluff to-morrow morning, my boats being too large for White River. In the mean time I send an aide by boat that leaves this morning to communicate with General Steele for orders, which I hope to get at Devall's Bluff.
I am, very respectfully, &c.,
JOHN E. SMITH,
HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Memphis, Tenn., September 15, 1863.
Brigadier General J. A. RAWLINS,
Asst. Adjt. General, Dept. of the Tennessee, Vicksburg, Miss.:
GENERAL: The following dispatch has been received from Major General F. Steele:
We are in possession of Little Rock; enemy retreating and Davidson in pursuit.
In view of the above, I have ordered Brigadier General J. E. Smith to hold his division at Helena, Ark., awaiting advises from Major-General Steele.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
S. A. HURLBUT,