HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Memphis, Tenn., January 2, 1864.
Brigadier General W. SOOY SMITH,
Chief of Cavalry, Columbia, Tenn.:
Forrest has been driven from West Tennessee and is now near Panola with about 5,000 men. My cavalry is short about 1,800 horses, drawn for three months since, but never forwarded. This cripples me exceedingly. My whole cavalry command is wearing down and I cannot get a remount. Sherman will be here on the 6th and wants me to give him infantry to the extent of 4,000 men. If he draws these away I must keep the cavalry. Your column should move on Okolona and thence west, to be joined by such force as I can send, clearing my front. Loring's division is at Canton, say 6,000 strong. French's division, at Meridian, has nearly all gone to Georgia. I wish you would consult with General Sherman before you move. I do not know what he may require. I have not heard you move. I do not know what he may require. I have not heard you move. I do not know what me ma require. I have not heard from A. J. Smith or his troops since December 21. The enemy's total of cavalry north of Jackson is about 9,000; the bulk of them south of me at present.
S. A. HURLBUT,
LA GRANGE, TENN.,
January 2, 1864.
Three conscripts who escaped from Forrest left him camped 3 miles south of Buck Snort on night of 30th. Forrest crossed at Panola next day. Chalmers joined him near Wash. Taylor's, and all left there at 10 a.m. on 29th.
Forrest, after crossing Hatchie in night of 24th, remained all day Christmas at John Miller's, north of Somerville. He camped near Oakland night of 26th, and left there 1 a.m. 27th, not halting till 2 p.m. 28th at Taylor's. They had 30 wagons, 150 beef-cattle, and about 600 conscripts unarmed. He was going to Okolona. No troops or beef-cattle left north of railroad.
J. K. MIZNER,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
January 2, 1864.
Patrol, just in by way of Quinn and Jackson's Mill, Olive Branch, Centre Hill, and Forest Hill, reports that nothing could be heard of the enemy except that it was the report that Forrest had crossed the Tallahatchie River and was still going south.
D. E. COON,
Major Second Iowa Cavalry, Commanding.