HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Chattanooga, September 27, 1863.
Major General JOSEPH HOOKER,
Washington or en route:
You will proceed from Louisville direct to Bridgeport, without stopping at Nashville. Subsistence and transportation will be furnished you at the latter place.
W. S. ROSECRANS,
KNOXVILLE, TENN., September 27, 1863
(Received 6 p.m.)
His Excellency A. LINCOLN,
I have just telegraphed General Halleck very fully, asking an explanation of your order, and anxiously await a reply.
A. E. BURNSIDE,
KNOXVILLE, TENN., September 27, 1863.
(Received 6.30 p.m.)
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
Does the President's order requiring me to move with my force intend the evacuation of that portion of East Tennessee held by me, or do you desire sufficient force left here to hold the line of the railroad? The force are now concentrated, and I am ready to obey the order in either sense.
You in your telegram speak of my delay. I have made no delay. I was ordered to move into East Tennessee, making this the objective point. I was then ordered to hold the railroad to the crossing of the Holston River, and the gaps of the mountains leading into North Carolina, and the recruit all the men possible. After the taking of Cumberland Gap I made disposition to carry out these orders which necessarily scattered my forces.
Your order required a concentration before there was a possibility of moving. I had large trains of supplies coming in which had to be protected-some 3,000 horses on the way which were necessary to render the cavalry effective. Our men had been one half rations from the moment of their arrival in East Tennessee, and were at that time entirely out, and the command was scattered over over a space of near 200 miles. Had we commenced moving to General Rosecrans by detail down the north side of the Tennessee River, as we were directed,the cavalry forces of the enemy would have destroyed our trains and prevented any possibility of an effective junction with Rosecrans.
The arrangements that have already been made have created the utmost alarm in the community, almost stopped recruiting, which was going on very rapidly, and weakened the confidence of one of the most loyal sections of the whole country in the ability of the