additional horses will be required. If horses are brought here at this season of the year, with the present scanty supply of forage, exposed in the open air, with the very little attention they can receive whilst they and the men are in such a comfortless condition they would be mostly unfit for service by the time the roads are good in the spring. Under the circumstances I think it advisable to get all the guns you can dispense with this winter into fortifications, and send the horses where they can be fed and recruited by spring. By selecting the best horses for the batteries you determine to keep in the field, enough might be got for any present movement.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT,
Tazewell, January 5, 1864.
Having ordered a captain and 50 men this morning to scout on Clinch River, I just learn that a force of cavalry and infantry has crossed the Clinch River and advances against us. I have also sent a scouting party toward Mulberry Gap in different directions, and doubled all my pickets. It appears to me that a regular plan has been laid out, and that it is the intention of the enemy to attack Tazewell by force from a northern direction, and to draw my attention by a small force south toward Clinch River. I am, however, prepared and shall give them a warm reception. Lieutenant-Colonel Matson has not returned yet, and I am afraid my courier has not reached him.
Your dispatch to Colonel Bowman has been forwarded immediately, but I am afraid that it will not reach him safe. Most all the cavalry having been sent out on picket and scouting, I am at present unable to fill your detail as ordered, but shall do so as soon as Lieutenant-Colonel Matson with his command returns.
Colonel, Commanding Post.
MOSSY CREEK, TENN.,
January 5, 1864.
Colonel O. H. LA GRANGE,
Commanding Second Brigade:
The colonel commanding directs that you have part of your command in readiness to forthwith proceed on an expedition to capture a detachment of 100 rebels at Lawrence's Mill, 4 miles from this place.
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I am, colonel, respectfully, your most obedient servant,