War of the Rebellion: Serial 058 Page 0716 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLIV.

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February 11, 1864.

General J. E. JOHNSTON:

General Polk telegraphs me from Hillsborough, February 9, that the enemy entered Jackson on 5th instant 35,000 infantry, sixty pieces of artillery, and cavalry (numbers not known). Crossed Pearl River on the 7th; moved rapidly upon Morton, destroying all bridges behind them; reached morton on the evening of the 8th and turned toward Mobile. General Polk has with him Loring's division and the cavalry [sic]; has sent there [sic] force at Mobile; has six months' provisions, and is confident.* Keep in communication with General Polk, and do what you can to assist him, either by sending him re-enforcements or joining him with what force you can. If possible the enemy should be met before he reaches the Gulf and established a base to which supplies and re-enforcements may be sent by sea.


DALTON, GA., February 11, 1864.

Major-Generals WHEELER and CLEBURNE:

Stop the reconnaissance. Give it up.


Chief of Staff.

RICHMOND, February 11, 1864.

(Received 13th.)

Lieutenant-General POLK:

have received your dispatch of 9th instant, and directed General Johnston to give you all the aid in his power. Keep in communication with him.


DALTON, February 11, 1864.

His Excellency the PRESIDENT, Richmond:

A dispatch from General Polk to General Maury, dated February 9, reports and enemy's column, 35,000 strong, with sixty cannon, moving from Morton toward Mobile. General Polk's cavalry ought to prevent such a march.


DALTON, February 11, 1864.

(Received 15th.)

Lieutenant General L. POLK:

I am instructed by the President to confer with you. Please tell me where the enemy's column is; where your infantry and where your cavalry; what the garrison of Mobile will, be, and what your plans. Who commands the Federal forces? Are any of them from Tennessee? Are you harassing the enemy; if so, with what force?



* For full copy of Polk's dispatch, see part I, p. 335.