located as nearly as possible west of the head of the Coteau, not exactly west. You will remember that I was quite deceived that it should not be farther east than James River, except in the last necessity. A little north or south of the head od the Coteau I do not object to, but I do consider any point east of James River out of position in view of the other posts. I trust you will bear this in mind. If necessary to go farther north on James River to find suitable place, do so. On a line due west of Abercombie would answer, but I want the post on James River if possible. Of course I do not mean to specify without reserve the point of assembling the four companies for Devil's Lake. I mentioned Abercrombie as it seemed the most suitable and convenient point, but if you find it better to select another you are authorized to do so.
I am, respectfully, your obedient servant,
[MARCH 31, 1864.-For Grant to banks, see Part I, p. 11]
MISSISSIPPI SQUADRON, FLAG-SHIP BLACK HAWK,
Off Alexandria, La., March 31, 1864.
Brigadier General CHARLES P. STONE, U. S. Army,
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: Owing to the Ozark having to slack up her purchases she was unable to get taut again before noon to-day, and as this is last chance of getting afloat, I hope that General Banks will not conclude to go up before morning. We will work at the vessel all night with men from three or four vessel, and if she won't go off we must wait for a rise in the river. Nothing could be made by going to-night, and you will have all day to-morrow, and can easily up with the advance.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
DAVID D. PORTER,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,
Alexandria, La., March 31, 1864.
Rear-Admiral D. D. PORTER,
Commanding Mississippi Squadron:
ADMIRAL: The major-general commanding instructs me to inform you that he will not need any boats over the rapids to-night to interfere with your chances of getting off the Ozark.
Very respectfully, admiral, your obedient servant,
CHAS. P. STONE,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.
HEADQUARTERS DEFENSES OF NEW ORLEANS,
New Orleans, La., March 31, 1864.
Asst. Adjt. General, Department Headquarters:
COLONEL: Please furnish these headquarters with schedule representing the respective commands and their stations within the District