From this sketch you will perceive that the greatest exertions are necessary on the part of the Cavalry Bureau to provide is with horses, arms, and equipments. I would, therefore, request you to make a visit yourself to Nashville and give an impetus to the reorganization. General operations will commence very soon and probably carry us beyond the reach of all supplies, except such as can be obtained from the enemy's country, so that everything must be done with the greatest possible promptitude. Captain Baylor, chief of ordnance, has telegraphed for Lieutenant Babbitt to be sent to me as ordnance officer. He has also requested General Dyer to send 10,000 sets of horse equipments, 10,000 Spencer carbines, and 300 rounds of ammunition per carbine at once to Nashville. A reserve supply of the same extent for remounting 10,000 men should be kept constantly on hand at Nashville. Please confer with General Duyer, and urge him to hearty co-operation with you; the great question for us to solve is that of forage. I think we can get a supply from the enemy, but intend to leave no stone unturned. Try and send me a senior special inspector, to travel with the corps and to keep it in constant communication with the bureau. Do all in your power to give us horses and arms and to render us such other assistance as will regenerate the cavalry of the WEST as that of the East has been regenerated. There are matters that I don't like to instruct to the mail from this place, so if you come WEST I will either see you myself at Chattanooga or Atlanta, or send a staff officer to confer with you.
I am, major, very respectfully,
J. H. WILSON,
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, Gaylesville, Ala., October 24, 1864.
Chief of Cavalry:
GENERAL: I received your note late in the night. I have ordered General Howard to send the Fifteenth Corps to develop the truth whether the enemy has made a barrier from mountains to the Coosa to absolutely bar the way to us or merely to delay to save time. It is important we control the reach from Little River to the opening of Will's Valley, and, therefore, I wish the effort continued.
W. T. SHERMAN,
HDQRS. CHIEF OF CAVALRY, DEPT. OF THE CUMBERLAND,
Near Little River, Ala., October 24, 1864.
Colonel L. D. WATKINS,
Commanding THIRD Brigade, First Cavalry DIVISION:
The general commanding directs that you march at once with your command to Gaylesville, and scout the country between Gaylesville and Rome in the vicinity of Dirt Town. You will return the ambulances borrowed from General Garrard at Gaylesville, ordering them to report at his train near that place.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. E. JACOBS,
Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.
27 R R -VOL XXXIX, PT III