and to assign General Field to the division lately commanded by General Buckner. In consequence of the badly crippled condition of General Field, it is thought the interest of the service will be advanced, inasmuch as General Hood's old division is the largest that I have,a nd will therefore require the most active and energetic officer that I have. General Buckner's old division is very small, composed of but two brigades at present. I will therefore better suit General Field's condition, for the present at least.
I have felt the less hesitation in this as General Lee suggested such assignment of General Buckner.
I remain, sir, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF EAST TENNESSEE, February 25, 1864.
General Martin with his own division is ordered to General johnston; the other division seems to be necessary to cover the only foraging country there is near us; without it, I do not think that we can get the little forage that is left. My suggestion about the cavalry was made at a time when I was not expecting to advance. As I was in the immediate presence of the enemy at the time the order came, I did into think it safe to send it off. I do not think that it would be safe to attempt to remain upon my present line without one of the divisions that General Wheeler brought here. General Hodge reports his command to have averaged a march of 20 miles a day since August last, and that he is not in condition to go into the field. I hope that he may be able to go into the field soon, and that we can then spare the other division to General Wheeler. Could we not by impressing railroads and stopping passenger trains for forty days throw forward forage enough for an emergency. With this and great exertions here I hope that we may meet the demands. I have reduced my transportation to little over an hundred wagons; the rest to be used for supplies of forage and subsistence. A like reduction will give us 3,000 or 4,000 wagons or supply trains in the States east of the Mississippi.
Let me urge my proposition to the honorable Secretary of War, in my letter of the 22nd.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF EAST TENNESSEE, Midway, East Tenn., February 25, 1864.
Brigadier General J. B. KERSHAW,
You will move your division in the morning to Greeneville and camp at some suitable locality within 2 or 3 miles of that place.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.