By your past conduct and heroism he confidently relies upon and predicts your future success in whipping the enemy wherever you meet them.
By command of Major-General Forrest:
J. P. STRANGE.
Numbers 65. Reports of Major General Stephen D. Lee, C. S. Army, of operations against expedition to Meridian.
February 4, 1864-2.56 p.m.
Enemy are advancing cautiously on Raymond and Clinton road in line of battle; also on road from Messinger's Ferry to Queen's Hill; now near Queen's Hill. General Ross repulsed enemy with heavy loss at 5 yesterday evening. Enemy leaving large numbers of dead on the field; had apparently drawn off for night. Their object seems to be Jackson. On this [side] of Big Black they all have twenty days' rations, so prisoners say. Have had 6 killed so far, and heavy skirmishing going on.
S. D. LEE,
NINE MILES BEYOND CLINTON,
February 4, 1864-4 p.m.
The enemy has advanced slowly in line to-day. Severe skirmishing during day. His force numbers at least 15,000 men, mostly infantry. There is also force of enemy advancing from Messinger's Ferry via Queen's Hill. His intention seems to be to move on Clinton and Jackson. Our loss is about 10 killed; a good many wounded, among the number several officers, including the gallant Major Bridges. Unable to tell the force on Queen's Hill and Clinton road yet. Adams' brigade has done the fighting and acted gallantly. General Ross, of the Texas brigade, made a most gallant fight yesterday evening on the Yazoo. Fought the enemy on foot with pistols at 12 paces, repulsing them with severe loss, enemy leaving killed and wounded in our hands. Heavy and continuous firing heard on the Yazoo to-day. No report from Ross as yet.
S. D. LEE,
Major General S. G. FRENCH,
(Copy sent to Generals Polk, Loring, and Forrest.)
NEAR CULLUM'S, CANTON AND JACKSON ROAD,
February 6, 1864-6 p.m.
GENERAL: Your note of 10.30 is received. The enemy are advancing on me from Jackson; their cavalry is 5 miles out. My command is concentrated here and Madison Station. I will not