NASHVILLE, TENN., January 20, 1864 - 11 a. m.
(Received 1.45 p. m.)
Major General J. G. Foster is falling back from Dandridge toward Knoxville. He can hold the place as long as supplies can be got to him. I shall go to Chattanooga and make every exertion for furnishing the supplies, and will send re-enforcements if necessary. Under existing circumstances I will not go to Saint Louis.
U. S. GRANT,
NASHVILLE, January 20, 1864.
Major General J. G. FOSTER,
Should you be besieged in Knoxville I will strain every nerve to get sufficient force from Chattanooga to relieve you.
U. S. GRANT,
KNOXVILLE, January 20, 1864 - 12 m.
No evidence has reached me to prove that either Ewell or A. P. Hill have re-enforced Longstreet, although scouts and deserters report troops from both corps. I am not convinced that he has received anything but the Third Division of his corps. I am doubtful of his intention to attack us here. He will certainly meet with defeat if he does. I am now moving cavalry up the south side of the French Broad to secure the forage grounds in that section. As soon as the infantry can retire from Strawberry Plains, after first taking down the bridge and sending the material here to be used in the bridge at this place, I shall send the Fourth and Twenty-third Corps to forage up the French Broad, retaining the Ninth Corps as garrison at this place, Lenoir's, and Loudon.
J. G. FORSTER.
NASHVILLE, January 20, 1864 - 12 m.
Major-General Foster telegraphs that he is being forced back from Dandridge toward Knoxville. General John Morgan is also said to be advancing from toward General Johnston's army. If Foster should be besieged it will be necessary for you to send a force from Chattanooga to his relief. The can subsist on the country as far as the Hiwassee in such a contingency, and send forward to Loudon, by steam-boat, all supplies possible.