War of the Rebellion: Serial 059 Page 0362 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLIV.

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HEADQUARTERS SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Memphis, Tenn., April 14, 1864.

Lieutenant-Commander PATTERSON, U. S. N.,

Commanding Naval Station, Memphis, Tenn.:

DEAR SIR: It is important that the rebel actual state of affairs at Fort Pillow should be ascertained. The best means for doing this is by reconnaissance made by the gun-boats.

I am of opinion that the enemy will not remain long, and will be much obliged if you will direct such movements on the part of the gun-boats as will ascertain the fact of occupation or abandonment.

Very truly, your obedient servant,

S. A. HURLBUT,

Major-General.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,

Nashville, Tenn., April 14, 1864.

General BRAYMAN,

Cairo:

What news from Columbus? Don't send men from Cairo to Fort Pillow; let Hurlbut take care of that quarter. The Cairo troops may temporarily re-enforce at Paducah or Columbus, but should be held ready to come up the Tennessee.

One object that Forrest has is to induce us to make these detachments and prevent our concentration in this quarter.

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major-General.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,

Nashville, Tenn., April 14, 1864.

General BRAYMAN,

Cairo:

Fort Pillow has no guns or garrison. It was evacuated before I went out to Meridian. Hurlbut has plenty of force if he will use it. What force have you from below? As soon as enough of McPherson's troops come to Cairo I will repeat the Purdy move, but hope that some officer will manage to catch some of Forrest's men that are now scattered from Paducah down to Memphis.

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major-General.

CAIRO, ILL.,

April 14, 1864.

Major General W. T. SHERMAN,

Nashville:

Enemy left Columbus and are now attacking Paducah. I sent up a regiment last night. No danger. Nothing further from Pillow. No boats up. A gun-boat has gone down to see. No regiments, but only fragments belonging to Seventeenth Corps have yet arrived. I will only use them as directed in your last dispatch, just received. I have nothing from Hurlbut or Grierson.

M. BRAYMAN,

Brigadier-General.