HEADQUARTERS FORREST'S CAVALRY DEPARTMENT,
Jackson, Tenn., March 30, 1864.
Brigadier General JAMES R. CHALMERS, Commanding Division:
GENERAL: The major-general commanding directs me to say that he has been advised by Colonel McCulloch that you have been returned to your command, and orders that you will report to him its condition, & c. (by courier), at this place, as early as practicable.
He directs also that you will move your division into the neighborhood of Somerville, or somewhere between Somerville and Whitesville, and keep him fully posted of all movements of the enemy from the direction of Memphis and Fort Pillow. He has ordered Colonel Neely to send all prisoners he may have captured to Corinth, to meet the prisoners forwarded from here this morning, and to send all captured negroes to this place.
CHAS. W. ANDERSON,
Aide-de-Camp to Major-General Forrest.
GADSDEN, March 30, 1864.
Brigadier-General PILLOW, Montgomery, Ala.:
GENERAL: I arrived here last evening via Selma, Montevallo, Talladega, Blue Mountain, and Jacksonville. I found the horses of my command literally on the point of starvation; they only had three ears each last night. The country east, west, and north of this point to the Tennessee River is about exhausted in the say of forage, and the impressments heretofore have reduced the supplies of many families to less than is absolutely necessary for their maintenance for the present year. Many other families have for months been dependent upon charity and chance.
I am informed that there are a number of islands in the Tennessee River upon which there is corn, and I leave with a portion of my command for Guntersville in a few minutes, where I shall have to fight for supplies for men and horses, as the Yankees occupy Larkin's Ferery - infantry, cavalry, and artillery - total, about 1,500; Decatur, about seven regiments and the place fortified; also the north bank of the Tennessee from Bridgeport to Decatur, and scout daily from one point to the other and have boats with which they can cross the river. They now threaten a raid from Larkin's Ferry to Decatur, on the south bank of the river, and although my effective force with me will not exceed 250 men, yet I hope I shall be able to damage them some if they come. I will have with me in ten days, near Decatur, 500 men, and will, before I return to Elyton or Montevallo, post myself fully as to the situation, strength, and purposes of the enemy. Any companies intended for my brigade had best report at Montevallo until my return, as this country will not be able to forage or subsist them. When the Tennessee falls we can subsist in Middle Tennessee. Our own cavalry has been a great terror to our own people in North Alabama. Stealing, robbing, and murdering is quite common. I have arrested some cavalry thieves, and will parole the robbers when I get them.
I have written in great haste as I am hurried, which you must excuse. Please show this to Governor Watts.
Your obedient servant,
JAS. H. CLANTON,