ham's corps. Stewart's assistant adjutant-general claimed 30,000, but there could not have been much more than 20,000 strong. Sixty miles out from Atlanta there were cattle, hogs, corn, and potatoes in plenty. Between Columbus, Ga., and Montgomery, Ala., the country was very rich; corn and forage wherein the greatest profusion.
Major and Provost-Marshal, Twentieth Army Corps.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
Atlanta, Ga., November 8, 1864.
Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT,
Commanding Armies of the United States:
GENERAL: I write you this letter confidentially, constrained only by a sense of duty, and with no view to personal advantage.
The orders (Numbers 277, General*), just received by telegram, virtually dissolves the Department of the Tennessee, and retains in the army two army corps, viz, the Fifteenth and Seventeenth Corps. The SIXTEENTH Corps in dissolved, and two-THIRDs of the army transferred to Major-General Canby. Being already on the Mississippi, he is better located than General Sherman now is for immediate influence in the river valley; but, general, I fear he is not the man for that important trust. Brave-hearted, well-meaning, gentlemanly as he is, still I fear, from my observation, that rumors affect him too much; that he ties up steamers to wharves regardless of expense to the Government; that he scatters his troops without feeling properly impressed with the vitality of certain points, and the comparative unimportance of others. General Sherman's directions are usually full and explicit, so that his control of the MISSISSIPPI River, even when absent, is better than that of most men present. Major-General Dodge, I learn, visited you when away with his wound. I have heard that he felt disappointed in not having the SIXTEENTH Corps, but I assure you he is a worthy officer, and one I am pleased to [have] command a DIVISION or corps under me, but General A. J. Smith, Dodge, and Dana were on my hands, and I recommended the senior, and believed him better for the post to which he was assigned; but there is no want of confidence in General Dodge. It is intimated that General Logan may not return to the Fifteenth. General Osterhaus is now commanding it, and does quite well. He is brave and energetic, and I am reluctant to disgust him by putting him back, and more reluctant to send the efficient and excellent commander, General Woods (Charles R.), back to a brigade, he has commanded a DIVISION so long. But I am always free to say that, other things being equal, I prefer an American corps commander to a German. I had already made arrangement to establish a department headquarters at Memphis, and now I have not time to change. Lieutenant-Colonel Clark will take this letter to you and receive from you any instructions or suggestions for the department, which will be thankfully received. General Sherman is at Kingston, and I cannot consult with him before Colonel Clark will be obliged to leave. I find the Army of the Tennessee just suited to my spirits-brave, confined, and in earnest.
With the highest regard, I am, yours,
O. O. HOWARD,
* See p. 679.