ATHENS, April 29, 1864.
Brigadier General J. C. VEATCH,
General McPherson says we must load light, so as to move fast. You can reduce ordnance to 140 rounds to a man and 200 to a gun, and the supply train so you know it will move right along. The road beyond Huntsville is rough, and we can get supplies along the line of railroad at any time. I think the supply train is not very heavily loaded; if any wagons are, take off enough to make them sure. We must move fast. Be sure to get everything at junction to-morrow night.
G. M. DODGE,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
Huntsville, Ala., April 29, 1864.
Major General C. C. WASHBURN,
Commanding District of West Tennessee, Memphis, Tenn.:
GENERAL: Your dispatch of April 24 to Major-General Sherman just received, and General Sherman sends me word that he has telegraphed you not to count upon any co-operating force moving up the Tennessee River, and thence out to Purdy and in the direction of Bolivar.
Under orders from him, Leggett's and Crocker's divisions of the Seventeenth Army Corps, now rendezvousing at Cairo, are to get ready for the field as rapidly as possible, and urged to hasten forward to the grand army in Northern Georgia. All my available troops here are moving in the same direction. This will necessarily leave you to rely upon your own resources and such troops as you may be able to draw temporarily and with safety from the District of Vicksburg. You may not be able with the troops at your disposal to assume the offensive with as much boldness as is desirable against an enemy like Forrest, and force him to fight or be driven out of West Tennessee. It is of the utmost importance, however, to keep his forces occupied, and prevent him from forming plans and combinations to cross the Tennessee River and break up the railroad communications in our rear.
By assumed the offensive-defensive-watching him closely and striking a blow whenever it can be put in to advantage-he will be compelled to be on his guard, and will not, I hope, be able to inflict upon us any serious damage.
You can direct Brigadier General Henry Prince, commanding District of Columbus, to remove the garrison and guns from Island No. 10 and break up the post, in accordance with Lieutenant-General Grant's instructions that all weak, isolated posts must be abandoned.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERSON,
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, Chattanooga, April 29, 1864.
The intention is that one of McPherson's divisions remain at Vicksburg and one of yours (Mower's) at Memphis. Allen is ordered