Yankton, Dak. Ter.
Dakota Cavalry, Company B, Captain William Tripp.
DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA.
Brigadier General HENRY H. SIBLEY.
Fort Snelling, Minn.
Lieutenant Colonel WILLIAM PFAENDER.
2nd Minnesota Cavalry, Lieutenant Colonel William Pfaender.
Invalid corps, & c. (detachments).
3rd Minnesota Battery, Captain John Jones.
Pembina, Dak. Ter.
Minnesota Cavalry Battalion, Major Edwin A. C. Hatch.
Saint Cloud, Minn.
Colonel MINOR T. THOMAS.
6th Minnesota (detachment).
8th Minnesota, Colonel Minor T. Thomas.
10th Minnesota (detachment).
Saint Peter, Minn.
6th Minnesota, Colonel William Crooks.
DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN.
Brigadier General THOMAS C. H. SMITH.
30th Wisconsin (seven companies),* Colonel Daniel J. Dill.
HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY,
Washington, February 1, 1864.
Major General N. P. BANKS,
GENERAL: Your dispatches of January 23, transmitting report and map of Major Houston, are received. This report and map contain very important and valuable information. The geographical character of the theater of war west of the Mississippi indicates Shreveport as the most important objective point of the operations of a campaign for troops moving from the Teche, the Mississippi, and the Arkansas Rivers. Of course the strategic advantages of this point may be more than counterbalanced by disadvantages of communication and supplies.
General Steele reports that he cannot advance to Shreveport this winter unless certain of finding supplies on the Red River, and of having ther the co-operation of your forces or those of General Sherman. If the Red River is not navigable (and it will require months to open any other communication to Shreveport), there seems very little prospect of the requisite co-operation or transportation of supplies.
It has therefore been left entirely to your discretion, after fully investigating the question, to adopt this line or substitute any other. It was proper, however, that you should have an understanding with Generals Steele and Sherman, as it would probably be hazardous for either of these officers to attempt the movement without the co-operation of other troops. If the country between the Arkansas and the Red Rivers is impassable during the winter, as has been
* At Camp Washburn, Milwaukee.