can telegraph him at Hebron. I desire you to keep as strict a guard as possible over the enemy, and find out all you can of their strength and movements.
In relation to people passing through our lines, no passes to cross the Big Black, except your own, my provost-marshal's, Lieutenant-Colonel Wilson, and my own, will be recognized. When persons come to your pickets and desire to come in you must exercise your discretion. No person can be allowed to come in out of curiosity or on unimportant business, or if they seem to be suspicious characters and cannot give a clear and distinct account of themselves. The prime object is to have as few persons pass our lines as possible. We cannot well close them entirely and not admit any one; therefore, for the present, you can exercise a sound discretion. No contraband goods will be permitted to go out. This includes letters not approved by proper authority, men's wearing apparel, and war material.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERSON,
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Chattanooga, Tennessee, November 7, 1863.
Maj. Gen. G. H. THOMAS,
Commanding Department of the Cumberland:
GENERAL: News just received from Major-General Burnside, taken in conjunction with information given by a deserter just in, whose statement you have, is of such a nature that it becomes an imperative duty for your forces to draw the attention of the enemy from Burnside to your own front. Already the enemy have attacked Burnside's most easterly garrison of two regiments and a battery, capturing the battery and about one-half of the forces. This corroborates the statement of the Georgia lieutenant* as to the designs and present movements of the enemy.
I deem the best movement to attract the enemy to be an attack on the northern end of Missionary Ridge, with all the force you can bring to bear against it, and, when that is carried, to threaten, and even attack, if possible, the enemy's line of communications between Dalton and Cleveland. Rations should be ready to issue a sufficiency to last four days the moment Missionary Ridge is in our possession; rations to be carried in haversacks. Where there are not horses to move the artillery, mules must be taken from the teams or horses from ambulances; or, if necessary, officers dismounted and their horses taken.
In view of so many troops having been taken from this valley and from Lookout, Howard's corps, of Hooker's command, can be used in this movement.
Immediate preparations should be made to carry these directions into execution. The movement should not be made one moment later than to-morrow morning. You having been over this country, and having had a better opportunity of studying it than myself, the details are left to you.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT,
*A. C. A. Huntington, Company E. Eighth Georgia Infantry-vide General Thomas' Journal.