War of the Rebellion: Serial 062 Page 0848 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter XLVI.

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of the enemy, and in creating confusion will contribute to our success. This force is reliable, being composed of the best material of New Orleans. Desperation and patriotism are combined to nerve their arms for a stroke for freedom. With them failure is a prelude to ignominious death.

I know many of the most prominent officers of these organizations, and in asking your confidence in their behalf, I can safely assure you that the reliance you impose will be sacredly executed. Undoubtedly we can take New Orleans, but how hold it? To possess and occupy would be the main consideration, at least long enough to secure its commissary and medical stores, also its large addition of soldiers to our army. The enemy's fleet might shell the city, but as rejoinder to that consideration, I suggest that the enemy are not likely to destroy themselves. The largest portion of the merchandise in the city belongs to Yankee traders and loyal men. The families of the officers of Banks' army, besides a large influx of Northern citizens, both male and female, reside there. It is not to be supposed that this wealth which they have fostered into existence will be ruthlessly and speedily swept to ruin and destruction.

It is unnecessary to attempt to exhibit the advantages that would accrue to our cause in the recapture of New Orleans.

It would retrieve the fall of Vicksburg and Port Hudson; it would substantially repair the disasters of last year; misfortune and gloom would wear the robes of triumph; it would renew the courage of our citizens, dampen the animosity of our enemy, and give proofs to the civilized world of the spirit which animates us in this struggle for our liberties.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

T. J. REID, JR.,

Colonel Twelfth Arkansas Volunteers.

Should you deem my suggestions of sufficient merit to adopt them and order to be executed, I would further suggest that continued demonstrations be made upon Vicksburg, Natchez, Port Hudson, and Baton Rouge; also that General Taylor demonstrate against Franklin and press him if he sends a portion of his command toward the city. The above, properly madame and continued, would all that is necessary to accomplish successfully and without the slightest loss our purpose.

Very truly, your obedient servant,

T. J. REID, JR.,

Colonel Twelfth Arkansas Volunteers.


Richmond, January 9, 1864.

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XV. Brigadier General D. H. Cooper is assigned to the command of the Indian troops in the Trans-Mississippi Department on the borders of Arkansas. Brigadier-General Steele is relieved from that command and will be otherwise assigned to duty by the commanding general of the Trans-Mississippi Department.

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By command of the Secretary of War:


Assistant Adjutant-General.