War of the Rebellion: Serial 086 Page 0070 LOUISIANA AND THE TRANS-MISSISSIPPI. Chapter LIII.

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Mouth of White River, Ark., October 18, 1864.

Major General J. J. REYNOLDS,

Commanding Nineteenth Army Corps:

GENERAL: Owing to the continued absence of General Dennis I again have taken the liberty of addressing you. On the evening of the day on which my previous communication was dated a dispatch-boat arrived from Memphis having on board Brigadier-General Marcy, Inspector-General U. S. Army, bearing dispatches from Brigadier-General Smith, at Memphis, Tenn., the nature of which you will see by the copy I inclose. After I had read it and listened to the statement of General Marcy I quickly determined how to act. I have the honor to inform you that in response to this second call three regiments, numbering about 1,500 men, were sent to his support. They were sent in light marching order, taking nothing but 100 rounds ammunition per man and a sufficient quantity of rations to last them to Memphis. Three hours after the call was received the boats were on their way up the river, and they could have gotten off even earlier had it not been for the fact that the boats were compelled to take a supply of coal. The total number of men I have forwarded to Memphis amounts to about 4,000, and they will probably be sent back within a few days, when they will at once be forwarded to Devall's Bluff as per orders. I will just here state that two brigades have been sent up Whiter River. It will afford me much satisfaction to know that the course I have pursued meets with your approval.

I have the honor to be, general, most respectfully, your obedient servant,


Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

(Copy to General Dana.)



Memphis, Tenn., October 17, 1864.

General DENNIS or


Mouth of White River:

Please see statement and hear explanation from General R. B. Marcy, Inspector-General U. S. Army, who so kindly offers to go in person to see you. Every movement of the enemy points to an attack on this place to-morrow by a force not less than 20,000, commanded by Forrest, Chalmers, Looney, Dick Taylor, and Mabry. The amount of public property here is immense, including about 200 siege guns, a fort two miles long, with an effective force of about 5,500 men, including 700 cavalry. Have not heard from General Washburn since the 13th instant. See copy of his dispatch.

Please send 2,000 men on City of Alton in light marching order with sixty rounds of ball cartridge, as there is not much surplus here. They may be needed but a day. Leave anything heavy for another boat. Two hours' time may save Memphis. I am no alarmist. Five thousand men would save Memphis, and two or three [thousand], perhaps. General Marcy will explain fully. All of inclosed statement is fully confirmed from other sources. General Forrest and Dick Taylor are known to have been in consultation on Friday at Grenada. Forrest's command