at Decatur. No enemy west of Tennessee River from Decatur down. Have also just received dispatch from Colonel Wisdom, dated Purdy, 15th instant, as follows:
No enemy in this vicinity, and my information induces me to believe that all is quiet in the direction of Eastport. I dispatched you yesterday stating that Brigadier-General Chalmers, commanding McCulloch's and Bell's brigades, were ordered to Okolona by way of Abbeville, and Colonel Neely's brigade was ordered to follow without delay, to report to you on their arrival, 22nd instant. No enemy this side of Decatur as far as I can learn. A force came to Tennessee River, opposite Waterloo; burned all the corn in that region and returned to Athens. If forage and rations can be sent to Tupelo, would, one account of position and water, prefer to stop there. Orders will reach me at Tupelo or General Chalmers at Okolona.
N. B. FORREST,
Montevallo, Ala., April 16, 1864.
Lieutenant Colonel T. M. JACK,
COLONEL: I have the honor to state that I received a communication from Brigadier-General Ferguson, commanding brigade of cavalry, of date the 14th instant, informing me that he had arrived at Tuscaloosa, Ala., with his command, and that he would guard the approaches by way of Jasper and Elyton. He would in a day or two, "move toward either Elyton, in Jones' Valley, or toward Jasper, in Walker County, as the movements of the enemy may necessity."
He sends to information of any enemy, nor have I received word from any other source. I have not had time to hear from those I have sent to the front for the purpose.
With respect, your obedient servant,
W. W. LORING,
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE GULF,
Mobile, Ala., April 16, 1864.
Colonel T. M. JACK,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Demopolis:
COLONEL: Please say to General Polk that in consequence of the want of labor many important defenses here are still incomplete. I desire to hire negroes by the year; the chief engineer will pay $360 per annum and feed and clothe the slaves. Can General Polk aid me tin procuring them from Mississippi? If any negroes should be captured from the enemy I hope the general will send them here to work.
I recommend that this place be not made a place of imprisonment for any other Federal prisoners. If there be reasons why they cannot be held at Cahaba, I will have a prison built at Greenville for those now here. Shall I return the medical officer to the enemy's lines who is a prisoner with this party?
There are several deserters from our army amongst them, who, having been recognized, will be tried by court-martial. There was an officer brought down in irons; no charges against him have reached me and I am still ignorant of the reasons for so confining