entire front of the line for five miles. Its commanding position, about fifty feet above the general level of the plain, will make its fire effective over nearly all that distance, and some points where the enemy may plant batteries beyond. Fort McPherson was commenced in compliance with the wish of General Burbridge for a garrison of one regiment as a place of shelter for Government property during a raid, should the main line be unfinished or not enough troops be here to hold it. The fort has been finished and sodded for two months, but will require to be trimmed up next spring. It is in a central position, and forms a salient of the main line. This gives its heavy guns great advantage in enfilading front of adjacent works. There is in rear of this fort, well adapted for sheltering property, should it have been needed for the purpose referred to, the east end of the sand-hill it was built on, being twenty feet higher than the level necessarily assumed for the rest of the work. It was arranged as an interior or cavalier battery, the crest of which is fourteen feet above the main crest. The latter averages twelve feet above crest of glacis. The relief from bottom of ditch to crest of parapet averages twenty-five feet. The ditch itself averages twenty feet wide and ten feet deep. The work has four traverses, one a small bomb-proof, a magazine forty feet long, and a musket-proof loop-holed gate. A well inside supplies it with water. There are eighteen embrasures with corresponding platforms, and six barbette platforms in main work, and two platforms for siege guns en barbette, with one 100-pounder mounted on center pintle carriage, also en barbette in cavalier battery. In this as in all the other works there are about three times as many places for guns as it is proposed to mount. This enables bringing nearly all the guns to bear upon a single point. Detailed descriptions of the other works are omitted for want of time. The accompanying tabular statement* shows their dimensions, measured around interior crests, and other facts which may be of interest. None of them, except Fort McPherson, has yet been sodded. Except Fort Numbers 11, and the batteries yet to be commenced, all are ready at once, in case of an attack. The timber in front in that case is to be cut and fences taken down, the material to be used in constructing several lines of abatis around and connecting the works, the latter lines to be enfiladed by fire of the forts. The work was commenced August 1, 1864. About $ 12,000 was expended by the city in the month of August. Fort Numbers 4 has been built by prisoners; the remainder of the work has been done by the engineer department. But for the inclemency of the weather the works would have been completed before this time.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN R. GILLISS,
Assistant U. S. Engineer, in Charge Defenses of Louisville.
MEMPHIS, TENN., February 3, 1865. (Received 8th.)
General GEORGE H. THOMAS:
The following information from deserters: General Lee's corps left Tupelo for South Carolina January 18. All of Johnson's artillery at Columbus, where they are fortifying, to make a stand if you go below Corinth. There are several powder mills in Lawrence County, near
* Not found.