HEADQUARTERS FOURTH ARMY CORPS, Huntsville, Ala., March 13, 1865.
Bvt. Major General NATHAN KIMBALL,
Commanding First Division, Fourth Army Corps:
GENERAL: Move your division by railroad to Knoxville. Consult with the commander of the district (General Stoneman) if he be at Knoxville, and if the troops can be supplied by railroad, i. e., if the railroad is in running condition as far as Bull's Gap, move by cars at once to that point.
Your obedient servant,
D. S. STANLEY,
HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, FOURTH ARMY CORPS, Huntsville, Ala., March 13, 1865.
Lieutenant Colonel J. S. FULLERTON,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Fourth Corps, Huntsville, Ala.:
COLONEL: I have the honor to request that the major-general commanding will call the attention of the major-general commanding the department to the small number of men in my division compared with the other two divisions of the corps, and to the number of recruits recently assigned to the division, if any regiments are to be assigned to the corps. The Second Brigade (Van Derveer's) numbers about 1,100 for duty and is the smallest brigade of the division.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. L. ELLIOTT,
Brigadier-General, U. S. Volunteers, Commanding.
GRAVELLY SPRINGS, ALA., March 13, 1865.
Major General WM. T. SHERMAN, U. S. Army:
MY DEAR GENERAL: Your kind letter* of January 19 is received. I am just about starting to carry out your ideas in Central Alabama. I shall move, however, without the support of infantry and in conjunction with Canby from the Gulf. If everything is attracted toward him, I don't anticipate much difficulty. I have three divisions in splendid condition; you can guess how many men when I tell you they are all mounted. From all I can learn Forrest has his forces mostly about West Point, on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad; two regiments at Verona, and one at Baldwyn, with his artillery at Columbus. They have been expecting our movement all winter, and uncles Canby gets off, as was expected, may annoy us somewhat; but once through the sterile region of North Alabama, I think I can get along pretty well. Having no infantry with us, I shall not be able to follow the route you indicate, but must move so as to cross Black Warrior high up. Delay might be fatal to us. We have numerous grapevine rumors here of your movements, but all give us no grounds for fear. I am very anxious, however, to have your column made invincible against the whole force the rebels can combine. Lee will doubtless do all in his power to concentrate a force sufficient to crush you, but I have every reason to think we ought to be able to excel him in concentration as well as other things. The