War of the Rebellion: Serial 079 Page 0667 Chapter LI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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CAIRO, November 6, 1864-10 a. m.

Major-General THOMAS:

I have assumed command of the MISSISSIPPI Squadron. Lieutenant Commander J. W. Shirk commands the DIVISION of gun-boats operating from Cairo, on the Ohio, to Muscle Shoals, on the Tennessee River. Lieutenant M. Forrest commands the four small gun-boats above Muscle Shoals. Captain Pennock, my fleet captain, commands the temporary naval station, Mound City, Ill., and will act on communications received in my absence. Four small gun-boats have lately been overpowered by the enemy and destroyed on the Tennessee River below Johnsonville, which place, I am informed, can only be saved by a large land force and some iron-clads. There is not enough water in the Tennessee River for iron-clads. When that river rises the absence of the four light-draught monitors sent to Admiral Farragut will be seriously felt. The other iron-clads are patrolling the MISSISSIPPI River to prevent the enemy from crossing to the east side as required by Jeff. Davis' intercepted cipher dispatch of September 30. I will endeavor to have an iron-clad force ready for the rise in the Tennessee River, and will always co-operate cordially with you.

S. P. LEE,

Rear-Admiral.

NASHVILLE, TENN., November 6, 1864-9 p. m.

Rear-Admiral S. P. LEE,

Cairo:

Your dispatch of 10 a. m. to-day just received. Please accept my thanks for your promised co-operation. I have sent a small force to Johnsonville, which, having fortified itself, now feels confident of its ability to hold that place. I have not yet learned the result of Commander Shirk's expedition up the Tennessee to reopen its navigation. The garrison at Johnsonville reported that they could see his steamers but were unable to communicate with him. I shall be very happy if you can aid me with some iron-clads when the river gets high enough. I think we shall then be able to clear the enemy entirely out of WEST Tennessee.

GEO. H. THOMAS,

Major-General, U. S. Volunteers.

NASHVILLE, TENN., November 6, 1864.

General R. ALLEN,

Chief Quartermaster, Louisville, Ky.:

Do not send anything up Tennessee -nothing can go there now. The Cumberland is rising. Raining heavily to-day, and every prospect of a good stage of water. Hold your boats at Paducah and Smithland, and I will notify you when river is in boating condition. We have a number of barges at Smithland with cola, lumber, hay, &c., and as soon as you learn that the Cumberland is up, you had better send some tow-boats to bring up these barges, as their contents are wanted. Have ordered all the cars we can spare to Louisville for forage.

J. L. DONALDSON,

Chief Quartermaster Department of the Cumberland.