not yet heard from. The time of movement would depend upon stage of water in Red River. It was understood that as soon as Steele and Banks had effected a junction on that river Sherman's army could all be withdrawn to operate east of the Mississippi. Will not the probable delay in expelling Longstreet from East Tennessee justify the adoption of this plan of Banks and Sherman? Banks reports his force too weak to advance without Sherman's aid.
H. W. HALLECK,
NASHVILLE, TENN., February 16, 1864-6 p. m.
(Received 12.30 a. m., 17th.)
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
General Allen telegraphed me that General Banks had taken a large amount of river transportation to New Orleans, preparatory to a move up Red River; also that a staff officer was collecting transportation for Sherman for the same move. This was crippling us here for transportation, and I stopped it. I expected Steele's movement if Banks has not the force to send. I would suggest that Sherman himself go in person if a part of his troops go.
U. S. GRANT,
U. S. FLAG-SHIP HARTFORD,
Pensacola, February 16, 1864.
Major General N. P. BANKS, U. S. ARMY,
Commanding Dept. of the Gulf:
DEAR GENERAL: We received intelligence from a refugee of respectability whom we know, that when last heard from McPherson was at Brandon; had a skirmish with the enemy, they told him, "with some of Johnston's forces." That, I presume, is a mistake. They appear to think that they are ready for him at Mobile, for they say he is advancing upon the city with 30,000 men; so you see they look for a grand attack upon Mobile. Of course you know that the number of troops at Mobile is greatly exaggerated, as we learn by the engineer who came in here the other day.
Very respectfully, yours,
D. G. FARRAGUT,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,
New Orleans, La., February 16, 1864.
Colonel E. G. BECKWITH,
Chief Commissary, Department of the Gulf:
COLONEL: The major-general commanding desires that there should be in depot at Brasherar City, by the 1st March proximo, 300,000 field rations. There should also be a considerable supply in depot at Port Hudson at or near the same time.
Very respectfully, I am, colonel, your most obedient servant,
CHAS. P. STONE,
Brigadier-General, Chief of Staff.