road to Tuscumbia. The caution and timidity with which Chalmers approached the road shows that we need apprehend nothing from that quarter. Our chief danger will be from Forrest, who will probably get out of Tennessee from the direction of Columbia, and Stephen D. Lee, who come out by Muscle Shoals. Sufficient for the day,&c. We must take advantage of this time.
Corse got here last night. To-day I move to Burnsville and
to-morrow to Iuka. By the day after I will have two divisions, Osterhaus and Morgan L. Smith, well toward Tuscumbia, encumbered as little finish up. The Tennessee has risen and is rising. I foresee much trouble in our operations for want of the means of crossing the river. I hear of fords, but they are all described as most precarious. I wish you would write to the quartermaster at Saint Louis and ask him to send me a good steam ferry-boat, to come up the Tennessee along with the first gun-boat that comes up. From the stage of water at Eastport there must be full 3 feet over all bars in the Tennessee at this moment, and the current indicates a rise in the mountains above. I will be able to let you know in a day or two the exact amount of damage to the railroad beyond Bear Creek. I will keep a brigade at or near Iuka until I feel that your arrangements are made to relieve them. I do not propose at any time to move troops by rail, but to expedited stores and baggage.
I am, your fiend,
W. T. SHERMAN,
IUKA, October 18, 1863.
One and a half million rations were lost day before yesterday between Cairo and Columbus. Colonel Haines, chief commissary of subsistence at Saint Louis, wishes to know if you do not think it advisable to ship subsistence stores to Eastport on the Tennessee River. When do you leave for this place?
C. A. MORTON,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Chief Commissary of Subsistence.
I do think the Tennessee is good for 3 feet up to Eastport. I start to-day.
W. T. S.
CORINTH, October 18, 1863-10.30 a.m.
Bragg is using the Alabama and Tennessee Railroad from Selma to Rome to supply his army; is moving his depots to Rove over it. Started Spencer to destroy it; he will be back by time we shall want him. East of us scouts are out in all directions and reports will soon be in.