prisoners. I presume that my present position is correctly understood by the commanding general and that he appreciates the smallness of the force at my disposal. I moved from Pensacola and Mobile Bay to make a diversion in favor of General Davidson. Davidson's raid and the one from pensacola have terminate, leaving the combined forces of the enemy to concentrate against me. I shall, stand my ground until; orders are received to the contrary or I am driven back by the enemy. In fact, while all the boats are required for returning the cavalry, I see no other alternative than to fight it out, in case the enemy decides to honor me. My troops are full of pluck and well in hand. Besides, I have the hearty co-operation of the navy, to which I am again under manifold obligations.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HEADQUARTERS DEFENSES OF NEW ORLEANS,
New Orleans, December 22, 1864.
Captain W. I. ALLEN,
Commanding Thirty-first Massachusetts, Colonel, opposite Donaldsonville:
Brigadier-General Sherman directs me to instruct you to keep your force, after the detachment is made for Plaquemine, as much concentrated when in camp as possible. All that is necessary above the telegraph station on the levee plantations and roads are outposts furnishing the necessary pickets and vedettes. Keep up and active system of instruction the whole time your men are in camp - that is, off the outside duties, so that they may become perfect in all duties connected with their arm.
I am, sir, respectfully,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF ARKANSAS AND SEVENTH ARMY CORPS, Numbers 84.
Little Rock, Ark., December 22, 1864.
In accordance with General Orders, Numbers 290, War Department, current series, the undersigned assumes command of the Department of Arkansas and the Seventh Army Corps.
J. J. REYNOLDS,
LITTLE ROCK, ARK., December 22, 1864.
Major General JOSEPH J. REYNOLDS,
Commanding Department of Arkansas, Little Rock:
GENERAL: My inspection of the defenses projected and in process of construction for the security of the position of Little Rock, and the information which I have received from Captain Wheeler, chief engi-
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