son to enable us to give battle with success to the enemy before reaching that point. Ferguson will be here by Wednesday. I took 500 rifles intended for the unarmed men of Jackson and Ferguson and gave them to Colonel Perrin, whose regiment has come in finely. I now need 800 stand at once to complete arming Perrin and to replace the 500. Perrin has over 600 enlisted men in camp.
I am, colonel, yours, respectfully,
S. D. LEE,
P. S.-There are arms at Meridian belonging to the Trans-Mississippi Department. Cannot these be taken and replaced?
S. D. LEE,
HEADQUARTERS LORING'S DIVISION,
Canton, Miss., February 1, 1864.
General S. D. LEE,
GENERAL: Colonel Lowry, who is now in command of Adams' brigade, is perfectly conversant with Pearl River and the different roads leading across it. He has kindly offered to go to Jackson to-night and confer with you and give you my views of the best movements that can be made in case the force is formidable-too large for us to complete with.
He thinks if the Pearl should suddenly rise we might find it difficult to cross. I have requested him to examine the pontoons and river and let me know the result. I had given orders for the movement to Jackson, but countermanded it at your suggestion.
I will concentrate my forces here and rely upon the cavalry to cover the bridges above here and Canton after we leave. If the force is anything of a size for us to fight, it matters not which way they come, we ought to meet them.
Colonel Lowry is an intelligent and very responsible officer, and will give you my views. He will return to-morrow.
I am delicately situated about the command, and think that General Polk ought to be with us.
With respect, your obedient servant,
W. W. LORING,
MERIDIAN, February 1, 1864.
You will find 1,000 stand of arms at Brandon, intended for General Kirby Smith's department, which cannot be transferred across the river at present, which you can take possession of for Perrin, Jackson, and Ferguson. The accouterments I will send you in the course of the week.