War of the Rebellion: Serial 062 Page 0368 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter XLVI.

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return with the escort to supply train for Fort Gibson. I take pleasure in saying that Lieutenant Bernard acquitted himself well of his trust.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

P. B. PLUMB,

Major Eleventh Kansas Volunteer Cavalry, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, New Orleans, February 19, 1864.

Major General W. T. SHERMAN,

Commanding Department of the Tennessee:

GENERAL: I have the honor to transmit to you two copies of communications from Admiral Farragut and one from General Halleck, which will give you information as to his movements in the vicinity of Mobile and the effect of your operations upon the people and troops in that section.* They appear to have anticipated an attack on the city by your troops. The admiral makes his demonstrations upon the water in the vicinity of Mobile, as requested by you, and I have no doubt will be thorough in his work.

I received your dispatch by Captain Dunham, for which I beg you will accept my thanks. General Steele has also communicated to me information as to the location of his troops and the strength he can command. He will be able to move 10,000 men, well equipped and armed, early in March. He says that the route to Monroe is the most practicable for his at this season of the year. Monroe is connected directly with Natchitoches by good roads. I doubt not that by a rapid movement I may be able to reach Matchitoches with my own forces, but if you could move a column at the same time from Vicksburg, across the country or by the Red River, which we shall clear in the course of our movement toward Alexandria, it would make certain the immediate occupation of Shreveport, possibly without any contest by the enemy. I shall be ready to move by the 5th of March. Captain Dunham knows the position of things here and will give you all the information you desire.

With much respect, your obedient servant,

N. P. BANKS,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, New Orleans, February 19, 1864.

Major D. C. HOUSTON,

Chief Engineer, Department of the Gulf, New Orleans:

MAJOR: The armament for the new fort at Plaquemine having been ordered there, you will please have the goodness to send immediately an engineer to that point and have the necessary magazines constructed without delay, and platform properly placed for the guns. According to your recommendation and that of the chief of artillery the following armament has been ordered there: One 30-

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*See Halleck to Banks, February 1, and Farragut to Banks, February 11 and 16, pp. 211, 294, 341.

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