War of the Rebellion: Serial 056 Page 0198 KY.,SW.VA.,Tennessee,MISS.,N.ALA., AND N.GA. Chapter XLIII.

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CIRCULAR.] HDQRS. LEFT WING, SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Pulaski, Tennessee, November 19, 1863.

It being impossible to feed the large number of negro women and children coming to our lines, and it being a part of the policy of the Government to protect them, it is hereby ordered that the commanders of posts and provost-marshal return them upon their plantations with written instructions to the proprietors to feed and protect them. Stock, produce, and forage will be left on such plantations in sufficient quantities to support them. Where negro women and children come from so great a distance that it is impossible to return them, they will be quarter upon deserted farms, and grain, abandoned stock, and sufficient supplies left to support them. When abandoned [farms] are not convenient, they will be quartered upon known rebels.

All able-bodied negro men will be received and disposed of as heretofore ordered.

By order of Brig. Gen. G. M. Dodge:

J. W. BARNES,

Lieutenant and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Vicksburg, Miss., November 19, 1863.

Brig. Gen. M. M. CROCKER,

Commanding U. S. Forces, Natchez, Miss.:

GENERAL: Have you heard anything more definite in relation to the movement of troops to the vicinity of Tunica Bend, and the concentration of cavalry in the lower part of the State.

The information I have here is that the rebel forces occupy about the same relative position between the Big Black and Pearl Rivers that they have for the last six weeks. Brigadier-General Hawkins, at Goodrich's Landing, has been quite alarmed, and sent down to me with all dispatch for large re-enforcements, stating that 16,000 men from Monroe were marching to attack him, but this information proved incorrect. I wish you to appoint a commission to examine and report upon the claim of Mr. Brown, who owns the steam mill, for lumber taken from him for Government purpose, saw-logs, use of his mill, &c., together with his standing in community, whether disloyal or not.

If you do not decide to make the expedition to Fort Adams and Woodville, you can come up with Gresham's brigade as soon as practicable, leaving Johnson's regiment; there is no special hurry.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. B. McPHERSON,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Vicksburg, Miss., November 19, 1863.

Colonel E. D. OSBAND,

Commanding at Skipwith's Landing:

COLONEL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your report* and letter of the 15th instant.

Arrangements will be made immediately to send up and secure

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*See Part I, p.566.

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