U. S. STEAMER EOLUS,
Off Fayetteville, March 16, 1865-5 a. m.
Major General W. T. SHERMAN,
Commanding Military Division of the Mississippi:
SIR: I had the honor to receive your communication of the 15th, at 7 p. m. of same date. I have written Captain Young, making known your wishes in regard to this vessel; also the tug. He will see General Dodge and make the necessary arrangements with him. I do not think Captain Young has a tug at his disposal now. I shall remain as near Fayetteville as possible til ordered down, or until I hear from you that my services are no longer needed. The steamers Lady Lang and Mary Benton are here unloading. The former goes down this morning. I shall send my dispatch by her. The river has stopped falling. More transports are expected up.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
E. S. KEYSER,
Acting Master, Commanding.
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
In the Field, Kyle's Landing, N. C., March 16, 1865-2 a. m.
Commanding Right Wing:
GENERAL: Yours is just received. Your orders are all right. I fear the present rain will make the road utterly impracticable. Hardee's whole force is in our front near the forks of the road, and I have ordered Slocum to go at him in the morning in good shape but vigorously and push him beyond Averasborough. Kilpatrick is ahead across the branch marked [Taylor's] Hole, about two miles this side the forks. Your courier brings me good news from Schofield and Terry. Schofield reports he whipped Bragg handsomely at Kinston and undertakes to have supplies for us there and probably farther along. Terry says he can reach Faison's with his 9,000 men by Sunday or Monday, and that the rest of Schofield's troops that had left Wilmington had made junction with Schofield at Kinston. Also that Sheridan is coming to us by land with 8,000 cavalry. So all is working well around us and we must not scatter, but aim to converge about Bentonville, and afterward Goldsborough. The rain is as bad for our opponents as for us, and I doubt if they have as good supplies or transportation as we. Terry has sent up 3,800 pairs of shoes and 2,400 pairs of pants. Divide with Slocum. We took Colonel Alfred Rhett, of Fort Sumter, prisoner yesterday. He is commanding a brigade in Hardee's troops ahead, and from drop expressions I think Hardee will try and fight us at the cross-roads.
W. T. SHERMAN,
HDQRS. DEPT. AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
Near Jackson's Farm, N. C., Graham's Bridge Road, March 16, 1865.
Major General W. T. SHERMAN:
GENERAL: General Logan's head of column reached this point about 1. 30 p. m. His divisions are going into camp; three will be here by dark.