The reason he assigns for employing these men are entirely conclusive, and I am sure will address themselves to your approval. I earnestly request that this application be granted. I believe these men to be essential to the success of his operations in the comparatively unknown region which will be the theater of his operations. An early answer to this application is respectfully asked, for obvious reasons.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, New Orleans, March 2, 1864.
Major General W. T. SHERMAN,
Commanding Department of the Tennessee:
GENERAL: In order to insure the success of operations indicated by the General-in-Chief, I request that you will, if practicable, furnish a force of, say, 10,000 men, with a proper proportion of artillery, to proceed up the Red River in time to reach Alexandria, La., on or about the 17th instant, with supplies for thirty days. If this force should be able, with the assistance of the gun-boats, to strike Harrisonburg, on the Black River, before marching on Alexandria, it would be very desirable to have it done. My impression is that I shall be able to occupy Alexandria by the day stated.
Very respectfully, I am, general, your obedient servant,
N. P. BANKS,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, Numbers 31.
New Orleans, March 2, 1864.
All suits, or other legal proceedings in the State courts of Louisiana, against the lessees of property from the Government of the United States, real or personal, for possession, occupation, rent, or trespass, are hereby suspended until further orders. Any persons who may have claims against such lessees or who are aggrieved by such occupation will present their claims to the provost-marshal of the department.
By command of Major-General Banks:
RICHARD B. IRWIN,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, Numbers 54.
New Orleans, La., March 2, 1864.
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3. The First Delaware Battery, Captain Benjamin Nields commanding, will proceed without delay to Franklin, La., via New Orleans and Opelousas Railroad. On its arrival it will be reported to Major-General Franklin, commanding Nineteenth Army Corps. The quartermaster's department will furnish the necessary transportation.
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31 R R-VOL XXXIV, PT II