major-generals are deficient, and from what I have been told by men and some officerse those high officers did drink to drunkenness, and some men said to me that on one occasion at least they saw most of the highest officers, from General Hood down, in a drunken frolic. I have been a strong believer in General Hood and thought you did the best for the country and our cause in placing him in command of the Army of Tennessee. But disasters the most appalling have overtaken his army. Being as I am on this road and seeing and talking with the men daily for the last ten days, I find that they are disaffected toward the present generals, and am forced to believe that they all ought to be relieved and General Johnston and a new set of officers placed over the men, though I must say I am not a Johnston man and confide much more in your opinion than that of my own. But the truth is, the men won't fight under the present leaders. You must do something or this fine body of men will be lost to the service. I am satisfied you must relieve General Bate; he has not the shadow of authority over his men for good. The unanimous voice of the men is he is unfit for the responsible position. He lacks influence and has no authority over his men. There is a jealousy growing out of the difference in clothing rations, and excessive labor imposed on them, and the taking from them their most beloved officer, who the say, always attended to their wants and cared for his men. The men in passing have acted well, but little depredating on the citizens. That they are not half clothed, without blankets and unpaid; and in this State, by regiments, they have left the army to go home to obtain supplies of necessary articles, and promise to return in fifteen days. I am led to believe that too many officers who handle public money speculate through friends on the money, to the injury of the soldiers and the people. There are some who before the war were not worth $500, now give in taxable property, worth from $50,000 to $100,000. There are many young men, and such as are able to do good service in the field, holding office that old men in the counties could well fill. For my standing I refer you to Hons. B. H. Hill and Echols.
JOHN W. TALLEY,
Refer letter inclosed to Quartermaster-General for remarks and report relating to his department.
Aide-de-camp acknowledge in kind terms inviting information as to the quartermasters who have grown rich on their offices, that action may be taken, &c. Admit the want of better discipline, but hope the statements in regard to the drunkenness of officers of highest rank is exaggerated. The law is severe against that offense and my disposition to enforce it is as full as any one could desire. Will call attention of the Quartermaster-General to the reported failures of his officers, &c.
MERIDIAN, February 9, 1865.
Brigadier General D. W. ADAMS,
All of enemy's force heretofore reported at Eastport has gone down Tennessee River. Ascertain soon as possible what are the move-