ADJUTANT AND INSPECTOR GENERAL'S OFFICE,
March 17, 1864.
Respectfully refereed to General Bragg, with the suggestion that the subject-matter be laid before the President.
By order Adjutant and Inspector General:
H. L. CLAY,
HEADQUARTERS ARMIES CONFEDERATE STATES,
Richmond, March 31, 1864.
The attention of the President is respectfully to this subject. It is one requiring attention, but, in my judgment, will only be complicated by the plan suggested. Were it practicable for the officers and troops of the Trans Mississippi Department to be crossed to this side there is an evident impropriety in the unmilitary mixing of the troops of separate commanders. Two or three suitable officers of General Smith's command might well be assigned to a general staff supervision of this service on this side of the river, but all other assistance should be furnished by the troops of General Polk's department.
APRIL 5, 1864.
General views, as above stated, concurred in. Such cointelligence and action as will secure proper protection to the trains when they reach the west side of the river seems to provide for all that can properly be done by General Smith's forces. The officers sent from Trans-Mississippi Department, as proposed, will aid in securing cointelligence.
Respectfully returned to the Adjutant-General for the execution of the President's views.
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,
Shreveport, La., March 5, 1864.
Lieutenant General T. H. HOLMES:
GENERAL: Your communication of the 28th ultimo has been received. The tone and feeling exhibited in this letter, so different from all which was hitherto characterized our official and private intercourse, has both grieved and surprised me. My aim and desire has always been to great General Holmes with that consideration and courtesy which his self-sacrificing patriotism and his many qualities of head and heart, as well as his age and rank, entitle him, and I demand at his hand an explanation of the charges he makes against me for "want of confidence and respect, so frequently manifested," as well as the indignities to which he complains of having been subjected.