depot since yesterday to ascertain what rations are required, immediately on the arrival of each detachment, and to have them supplied without a moment's delay. I have plenty of cooked rations, and can supply the troops as rapidly as I can ascertain what they require. I assure you that the delay cannot be attributed to any failure or neglect of the subsistence department of this place.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major and Commissary of Subsistence, U. S. Army.
176 1/2.] WHEELING, January 25, 1865.
Colonel LEWIS B. PARSONS,
Just received the following from our agent at Benwood:
We have been ready two hours to start train No. 20. Now 5. 40 p. m., but the men won't let us do it because White, the officer in charge, is across the river at Bellaire. They are nearly all drunk, and threaten to shoot us. We are providing the cars with straw; very many of them have stoves. No troops laying over for want of transportation. We will get provost-marshal-general to remedy the difficulty if possible at Benwood.
Troops are coming through promptly and abundance of coffee is supplied at Benwood and on the line, and in case there should be a temporarily delay at Bellaire the officers should be requested to have the men have the cars, so they can be returned to Cincinnati. We answered your message last night.
J. B. FORD.
177.] CINCINNATI, January 24, 1865.
Honorable C. A. DANA,
Assistant Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.:
I shall get off 16,000 by midnight. There will be about 3,000 or 4,000 who will go to-morrow. I shall be at Columbus to-morrow, Wheeling next day.
LEWIS B. PARSONS.
177 1/2.] CINCINNATI, January 24, 1865-3 p. m.
W. P. SMITH,
It is so cold I fear there will be suffering going over the mountains unless there is great care in the preparation of stoves, &c. I go to Columbus to-night, remain one day, and then to Wheeling. Everything works well so far as I can learn.
LEWIS B. PARSONS,
Colonel and Chief of Rail and River Transportation.
178.] CINCINNATI, January 24, 1865.
General ROBERT ALLEN,
At least 16,000 will have left by dark to-night. Balance go to-morrow. I go to Columbus and Wheeling, to remain one or two days. All