DEMOPOLIS, ALA., February 21, 1864.
The enemy has left Meridian and is moving toward Columbus. Nothing recent from the cavalry.
W. J. HARDEE,
YORK, February 21, 1864-12 o'clock.
GENERAL: I dispatched you yesterday all the reliable information I could get from above and below on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, and its confirmation this morning, all which the operator here says went forward correctly. The enemy left Meridian day before yesterday, eleven regiments infantry, one regiment cavalry, one battery artillery strong, taking the direct road to Meridian [Columbus?]. Scouts yesterday report the enemy in force (what force I have not learned precisely) advanced as far up the Mobile and Ohio Railroad as Lauderdale. I have sent to find out and will report as soon as I do. On this road there is nothing except the pickets in this morning from Cuba report large fires in that vicinity during the night. I have sent to see what that means. I am short of ammunition and want the means of taking care of it. Please dispatch me if I can get accouterments from Demopolis. I do not know what has become of our ordnance train. I also want an ambulance or two, as I frequently have to leave my sick on the march for want of them. I have just learned from Captain Oliver that our train is on this side of the river. I will send my ordnance officer to attend to getting the accouterments. Rest assured, general, I will send promptly all information I get, and keep an sharp watch on their movements. Scouts just in report the enemy on this road gone back to the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.
I am, general, very truly,
R. O. PERRIN,
YORK STATION, February 21, 1864-3 p. m.
The report from my front in that the enemy have moved on De Kalb, Kemper County, Miss., the direct route to Columbus. Reliable, I think. Shall I move up on this side of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad? If so, telegraph me.
R. O. PERRIN,
DEMOPOLIS, February 21, 1864.
Captain BATES, Commanding Post at Gainesville:
Information from Colonel Perrin, commanding regiment between Meridian and Demopolis, is that the enemy is reported to have gone from Meridian upon De Kalb, Kemper County, on the direct road to Columbus. You will try and verify this movement, and in the mean time give this information to General Lee.