HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE EAST TENNESSEE,
Russellville, Tenn., January 25, 1864.
Brigadier General C. VAUGHN,
I have the honor to notify you that a part of the enemy's cavalry is said to be leaving the country by way of Cumberland Gap. The commanding general directs that you will endeavor to gain definite information on the subject and let us know as soon as possible.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
G. M. SORREL,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General.
DALTON, January 25, 1864.
His Excellency JOSEPH E. BROWN:
DEAR SIR: I have the pleasure to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 16th instant, and to offer you my thanks for it.
It gives me great satisfaction to be able to tell you that the daily receipts of provision and forage from Atlanta are now fully equal to the consumption, and that if the working of the road continues to be as effective as it is now we may hope for a gradual accumulation, such as is necessary to prepare us for accidents or movements of the enemy.
I have had no intelligence from the officer sent into Mississippi, although he was dispatched immediately after your first letter reached me; nor have I heard from Lieutenant-General Polk, whom I addressed at the same time, in relation to the rolling-stock of this road taken to Corinth.
I have learned that five trains belonging to the Nashville and Chattanooga and Knoxville and Dalton roads are now east of the Savannah River and employed by the Confederate Government, and have requested the Quartermaster-General to have them returned without delay. Should this be done the transportation of all that we need will be easy. If I had the control of the officers employed in procuring supplies for the army, stock-cars should not be used; the beeves should be driven. I have partially succeeded in relieving the road of their transportation by having them butchered at Atlanta. This enables us to transport in two cars an amount of beef that before required five.
Thanking Your Excellency most cordially for the promptness with which you have acted upon my suggestions, and the interest you manifest in whatever concerns this army, I am, with high consideration, your obedient servant,
J. E. JOHNSTON.
CLINTON, MISS, January 25, 1864.
I desire you, if all is quiet on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, to relieve General Ferguson and order him with his brigade to report to General Lee. He may report by telegraph and send his guns and baggage by railroad. You will retain with you the regiment of Colonel Barteau.