commissary stores as fast as furnished means of transportation. I have still to send forward about eight car-loads of quartermaster's stores and about 100 car-loads of commissary stores. I shall them have to send forward (if all the lumber at this post is sent forward) about 250,000 feet of lumber, requiring fifty cars of contrabands and refugees, after which it will require all the rolling-stock of the road to move the command. I am now furnished about forty cars a day. At this rate it will take at least eight days to move the command. If the passenger trains were suspended for three days and the engines used for freight the movement would be very much expedited. I shall permit no delay here. Trains shall be loaded and dispatched as rapidly as they arrive. The post agent, Mr. Hudson, advised me that the motive power of the road is taxed to its utmost capacity. Of this, however, you can be fully advised by General Webster. I desire specific instructions from you in regard to the private houses in the town. Is it your purpose that the town shall be destroyed, or only such barracks as have been erected for the troops? I shall as far as practicable the works we have erected for the defense of the post. We have had all day a continuous rain, and the prospect is that Corinth, for a few days at least, will be environed by impassable streams.
JOHN D. STEVENSON,
HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Corinth, January 17, 1864.
I am pushing everything as fast as transportation is furnished. Nothing lays over. Unless more rolling-stock is furnished I shell be at least eight days. My reliable scout, in from below, reports Ferguson's cavalry 10 miles below Okolona, on railroad, recruiting his stock. Owens' and another rebel's battery (ten guns) moved from Okolona last week to Pontonac. They were subject to orders of General Forrest. I send you by morning train Mobile papers to 9th instant.
JOHN D. STEVENSON,
HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Vicksburg, Miss., January 17, 1864.
Brigadier General J. P. HAWKINS,
Commanding District of Northeast Louisiana:
GENERAL: As soon as boats can be provided-probably within a week-the posts at Milliken's Bend and Goodrich's Landing will be broken up and the troops transferred to another location. You can take the necessary initiatory steps.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERSON,