mouth, that you could prevent Forrest from getting into Western Kentucky? If so, answer, and you are authorized to send the force there instead of to this place.
GEO. H. THOMAS,
Major-General, U. S. Volunteers, Commanding.
LOUISVILLE, KY., October 20, 1864.
Captain J. BATES DICKSON,
Maxwell telegraphs the following:
Lyon and several hundred men reported near Elkton this morning. I have not sufficient force to prevent them going where they wish. This place is in danger.
Burge has been order to concentrate at Princeton and take the offensive.
NASHVILLE, October 20, 1864 - 9 p. m.
I have no doubt that Forrest, with from 8,000 to 10,000 men, is in the vicinity of Corinth and Eastport. The railroad is intact from Mobile to Cherokee. If we except any quiet either in WEST or Middle Tennessee he must be whipped out and the railroad destroyed as low down as Macon, Miss. It will require 15,000 men to make a sure job of it. I leave General Hatch with 2,700 cavalry at Clifton to co- operate in any move that may be made. I return to Memphis in the morning. My force there is weak, and I have sent Colonel Hoge back there with the force that was to occupy Eastport, as it was inadequate for that purpose ad is much needed at Memphis.
C. C. WASHBURN,
MEMPHIS, October 20, 1864.
(For General Sherman.)
Indications are that Forrest and Dick Taylor have gone, by the way of Tuscumbia, to Sherman's rear. Nothing from Generals Washburn or Hatch since the 13th. I propose to make a reconnaissance to-morrow to find out where this force has gone. Only 800 cavalry effective here.
M. L. SMITH,
GENERAL [THOMAS]: I forward this cipher to General Sherman at front.