not count on a co-operating force from the direction of the Tennessee, because your troops are now in motion toward Dalton:
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF WEST TENNESSEE,
Memphis, April 24, 1864.
I send two boats to-day to bring cavalry from Vicksburg. As soon as they return I shall send all the cavalry I can raise, with 2,000 infantry, in pursuit of Forrest. He is still at Jackson, 8,000 strong. The cavalry from Vicksburg will not be here so that I can move before the 30th. In sending this force away I leave this city somewhat exposed, and if 1,000 or 2,000 men could be sent here from Cairo for a week it would insure our safety. On the same day I move from here an infantry force should move from Tennessee River toward Purdy and Bolivar. Our infantry, in the absence of further advice, should leave the Tennessee River Saturday morning and should arrive at Bolivar Sunday night. My troops will reach Bolivar at the same time. I believe it is not true that the railroad is in operation to Corinth, but is to Tupelo, and is being repaired as fast as possible.
C. C. WASHBURN,
W. T. SHERMAN,
NASHVILLE, TENN., April 28, 1864.
General C. C. WASHBURN,
I have sent orders to Saint Louis for all men belonging top you not to be detained for horses on any account. We are now all in motion for Georgia. I fear we cannot at this time divert men to Purdy. The two divisions of McPherson, collecting at Cairo, will have to follow us via Clifton and Pulaski.
Don't hesitate to take horses and everything in the country that will strengthen you. It is only a question whether you or Forrest shall have them. I sent our dispatch to McPherson at Huntsville, but he, too, will soon be in motion for Chattanooga and Dalton.
We want you to hold Forrest and as much of the enemy as you can over there, until we strike Johnston. This is quite as important as to whip him. You should have a good force of infantry of about 4,000 men as a solid column, against which Forrest could make no impression by his bold dashes. Don't calculate on a force moving inland from the Tennessee River now, as we cannot spare it, but rely on your own command, which make as strong as possible. We cannot judge at this distance as well as you can, but don't let Forrest move about in that country as he has done.
We have information, deemed reliable, that part of Polk's command is with Johnston and the balance near Demopolis.
The calculation is, next to strike the Mobile and Ohio Railroad near Mobile from the direction of New Orleans. I sent by telegraph your dispatch of the 24th to McPherson, who will give you more specific instructions, based on the present position of his troops.
W. T. SHERMAN,
HDQRS. CAVALRY DIVISION, SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Memphis, Tenn., April 28, 1864.
Captain M. M. LATTIMER,
Commanding Provisional Cavalry Regiment:
CAPTAIN: In pursuance of the inclosed order* of General Washburn, you will send out a party of a commissioned officer and 25 men
*Omitted; instructions herein repeated.