February 13, 1864 - 3.15 p. m.
Last night Major Steede came to my camp with 150 or 160 men, and on account of the information received I sent him out on the De Kalb and Union road.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. W. LORING,
10 1/2 Miles west of Meridian, February 13, 1864 - 12.15 p. m.
Major General W. W. LORING,
GENERAL: In consequence of the obstructions of the road I am falling back to the intersection of the Union and Meridian roads to feed. I have left a squadron on picket at the Bayou Phalia and have one on the road between the Union and Meridian roads. We have been hearing the enemy's drums all along, though he has not yet made his appearance at Bayou Phalia. I found it impracticable to make a stand at any point in rear of me, because the obstructions were of such a character as to prevent my falling back promptly in case of a flank movement. Some of General Jackson's scouts have just come up; they report having heard skirmishing this morning in the direction of Chunky bridge (railroad); they are of the opinion that all [of the] enemy are advancing on this road.
S. W. FERGUSON,
February 13, 1864.
Information from General Forrest, through General Gholson, of the enemy, 13,000 strong, in two columns, moving south. Gholson and Roddey co-operating with Forrest. Is not General Ruggles, with Harrison's regiments and other troops, awaiting your orders at Columbus?
IN FRONT OF MERIDIAN, February 13, 1864.
Lieutenant-General L. POLK:
I have examined carefully the positions in front, and I do not regard any of them as tenable with the force under my command. Will you please inform me as soon as you are able to move, so that I may know what to do in any emergency.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. W. LORING,