War of the Rebellion: Serial 053 Page 0118 KY., SW. VA. TENN., MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLII.

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daily to Major Willard, as indicated in the above order These regiments will be relieved daily until further orders.

Major Maurice will detail the artillery, relieving it daily until further orders.

By order of Brigadier-General McArthur:

WALES W. WOOD,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Memphis, Tenn., October 6, 1863.

Colonel J. C. KELTON,

Asst. Adjt. General, Hdqrs. Army, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: I have the honor to report that Major General B. M. Prentiss reported to me for duty some ten days since. Having no adequate command to give him without displacing officers in my opinion better qualified, and having been informed by Major General U. S. Grant that he had no command for him below, I have given him a leave of absence for twenty days, to report to Washington for such assignment as the Department may order. His resignation, so far as I am informed,is still pending, and as he still insists upon its acceptance on the grounds of his own health and the situation of his family, I recommend that it be at once accepted. His address will be at Quincy, Ill.

Your obedient servant,

S. A. HURLBUT,

Major-General, Commanding Corps.

HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

October 6, 1863.,

Colonel J. C. KELTON,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Army:

COLONEL: I have the honor to inclose for the information of the general-in-chief my letter of instructions to Colonel George E. Spencer, First Alabama Cavalry.

Colonel Spencer's regiment is wholly composed of refugees from Alabama. They have been in several engagements and behaved well. They are thoroughly acquainted with the country, well mounted and armed; have two light steel guns, take with them as volunteers 6 engineers who can either run or destroy railroads or steamers. The expedition is directed against the Montgomery and West Point Railroad, because it is a connecting link of great importance and of a different gauge from the other southern roads. Spencer is certain that he can get through the outer cordon without observation, and if he does so, I am satisfied he will make his way to Montgomery. His force will be about 650 men.

While I am now writing I would remark that the enemy's force of cavalry has been largely increased in North Mississippi, and that I have this moment (2 p.m.) intelligence of an attack upon our advanced cavalry on Coldwater below La Grange with artillery.

Your obedient servant,

S. A. HURLBUT,

Major-General.