charging his position to the right or left as in his discretion it may appear expedient. He will keep the enemy's force in front of him in observation, refit his batteries, and put his command in condition for an active spring campaign.
II. Major-General Forrest will take such portion of his command as he may think necessary and make a short campaign in West Tennessee. He will leave his artillery at or near Columbus to be refitted, as also his wagon train. The rest of his command he will order to take such a position in North Mississippi as he may deem most suitable to hold the enemy in check during his cam align. He will keep these headquarters constantly advised of his movements by way of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.
* * * *
By command of Lieutenant-General Polk:
THOS. M. JACK,
RICHMOND, VA., March 5, 1864.
Major General D. H. MAURY,
Commanding Mobile, Ala.:
GENERAL: The attention of the Adjutant and Inspector General has been called to your monthly return, in which your command is designated as "the Department of the Gulf." I am directed by him to inform you that as you command a district of country in the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana, the name is incorrect. There is no order constituting such a department. The error probably arose from the incautious language of the telegram sent to you April 27, 1863, when at Knoxville, Tenn., in which you are directed "to proceed to Mobile and take command of that department." Prior to that time the State of Alabama was a portion of General Bragg's command and subsequently of General Johnston's. Please see copies of a letter to General Johnston August 12, 1863, and Special Orders, Numbers 23, 1864, from this office, herein inclosed.* Strictly speaking, you command Mobile and its defenses, within such limits as may be prescribed by Lieutenant-General Polk, commanding, and with authority to communicate directly to the Adjutant and Inspector General upon all matters which demand the prompt attention of the War Department.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. L. CLAY,
HEADQUARTERS, Greeneville, East Tenn., March 5, 1864.
General G. W. C. LEE,
Aide-de-Camp to the President:
GENERAL: General Alexander has just arrived, and has given me a partial idea of a combined movement of General Johnston's army and my own. The most serious difficulty in my way is the scarcity of supplies, but I think that I can get through as far as Madisonville if the weather is favorable. There are two routes from this to Madi-
*See of January 28, Part II, p. 627.