HDQRS. FIRST DIVISION, FIFTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Woodville, Ala., January 9, 1864.
Lieutenant Colonel A. ROBERTS,
Thirtieth Iowa, Commanding Detail at Claysville:
COLONEL: Before returning to camp you will make a reconnaissance in the vicinity of Guntersville, crossing to ascertain the force of the enemy there, what they are doing, &c.; in a word, get all the information possible.
It is reported here that there is a large force on the other side of the river, and they are fortifying strongly at Guntersville, and also at Roe's Island. Make as thorough a reconnaissance on this side of the river as possible, and then return. Seventy-five mounted are ordered to Claysville and will remain in the vicinity until further order. Keep the two men of the mounted infantry until you finish your reconnaissance and then send in advance with your report.
By order of Brigadier General C. R. Woods:
C. H. KIBLER,
HEADQUARTER SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Vicksburg, Miss., January 9, 1864.
Brigadier General M. D. LEGGETT,
Commanding Third Division:
GENERAL: The enemy having moved in and threatened to obstruct the navigation of the Mississippi River at some point between Greenville and Bolivar, you will immediately embark the Third Brigade (General Maltby) and one battery on board transports, to proceed up the river to this point and disperse the enemy, and if possible give them such a lesson that they will not be disposed to trouble the river in that quarter again. The command will go provided with eight days' rations of hard bread and small-stores, and five days' rations of meat, 40 rounds of ammunition to the man, and twelve wagons. You will, on your arrival at Skipwith's Landing, see and consult with Captain Owen, U. S. Navy, commanding District of the Mississippi River, and Colonel Osband, commanding post, who will be able to give you much valuable information in relation to the position and movements of the enemy, roads, &c. The former has been requested to co-operate with you, and the latter will join you with his available cavalry force. I wish you to impress on the command the importance of protecting the families and property of all persons well disposed toward the United States, and where it is necessary to take property, forage, &c., for military purposes, have it taken regularly and proper receipts given. You are going into a section of country where the citizens have manifested their good will toward our Government, recognized the freedom of our negroes, hired them, and are making arrangements to work their plantations.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERSON,