HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF EAST TENNESSEE, Greeneville, February 28, 1864.
Brigadier General J. C. VAUGHN,
Your favor of the 26th is received. Colonel Dibrell pickets down the railroad as far as Russellville, with his main force at Rogersville Junction. By communicating with him you could always find out when it would be safe or unsafe to run your hand-car. You ask how to pay off the non-paroled men of your old brigade. on duty with you. Do you intend it to be understood that any of the non patrolled prisoners are on duty? If so, the lieutenant-general commanidng wishes them to be relieved and sent to some camp to await exchange. It is expected that all prisoners in this department will soon be exchanged. The lieutenant-general has opened communication for that purpose. How many of your men are unexchanged?
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
PRIVATE.] DEMOPOLIS, ALA., February 28, 1864.
His Excellency President DAVIS,
Sherman's campaign being over, which from the Yankee account it seemed was intended to be a precursor of that of Grant from Chattanooga, the mind turns naturally to the latter. In reflecting on the posture of affairs there are certain views upon which my mind has settle din regard to the spring campaign, which I beg leave respectfully to submit for your consideration.
The point from which the most important movement is to be made in the spring is Chattanooga. The amount of force confronting it under General johnston is not believed to be adequate to resist it base exposes his flanks through long lines-that in front of me, not less than 600 miles from Chattanooga to the Mississippi River. I respectfully suggest that the infantry force under my command being creased by the addition form General Johnston's army of one division, and I strongly desire that the division sent me be my old division of Tennesseeans, now commanded by Major-General Cheatham. This division consists of about 4,000 men, effective. The material composing it was raised by me chiefly in the western district of Tennessee-a few regiments from Middle Tennessee. If this division were ordered to report to me at once I would send it up to the border of the district or into it, and I am confident that I could increase its strength to double its present numbers buy recovering a large number of men who during the last three years have left it and gone back to the district, and others who have never been in the service. The addition of this force to my present command, and the additions I shall receive from Mississippi and Alabama to that command, will give me a column of 15,000 infantry. To that I am confidant of adding a column of 15,000 cavalry, which would give me a united column of 30,000 with which to operate on Grant's right flank in the spring. To enable me to do this it would be necessary to order General Kirgy Smith to operate with all the troops at his command vigorously upon Bank's whole line, and upon any