War of the Rebellion: Serial 062 Page 0846 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter XLVI.

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EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT, C. S. A.,

Richmond, Va., January 9, 1864.

Lieutenant General L. POLK,

Commanding, & c., Meridian, Miss.:

GENERAL: In case you decide to make an attempt to recapture New Orleans, you are authorized to call upon Admiral Buchanan for any assistance and co-operation he may be able to give.

By order of the President:

G. W. C. LEE,

Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

RICHMOND, VA., January 9, 1864.

Lieutenant General L. POLK,

Commanding, & c., Meridian, Miss.:

GENERAL: The President directs me to send you, by Colonel T. J. Reid, jr., Twelfth Arkansas Volunteers, the plan proposed by this officer for the recapture of New Orleans (copy herewith). His Excellency is sure that you will agree with him in considering the prize aimed at worth great efforts and corresponding risks; and as the feasibility of the undertaking can be better determined upon from your position than at this distance from the field of operations, the subject is committed to your most earnest consideration and best judgment. It is needless to call your attention to the necessity for the utmost secrecy, if anything is to be done, and for the greatest expedition in getting the troops into position after the movement is commenced. It will probably be necessary to have the co-operation of the naval authorities at Mobile, and authority is herewith transmitted to call upon Admiral Buchanan to give you all the aid in his power.

It will also be desirable to inform General Taylor of your proposed plans so far as to enable him to regulate his movements accordingly; and you may use Colonel Reid, if you so wish, for this purpose or any other in which he may be useful. As the present disposition of the enemy's forces may at any time be changed to one less favorable to the enterprise, you will realize the importance of prompt decision.

Having the honor of expressing to you the President's best wishes,

I am, very respectfully,

G. W. C. LEE,

Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

[Inclosure.]

RICHMOND, VA., January 8, 1864.

His Excellency President DAVIS:

I beg to submit to your consideration the following plan for the capture and permanent occupancy of New Orleans. Having been a prisoner since the fall of Port Hudson till the 14th of December, 1863, and retained in the city, I possessed advantages to acquire information as to the military defenses of the city. It was my study during my imprisonment to collect all the facts bearing upon the probability of a repossession by the Confederate troops. The force of the enemy numbers three batteries of artillery, a battalion of cavalry, one