War of the Rebellion: Serial 109 Page 0533 Chapter LXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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West Virginia, and thus make available for service on this line the troops now employed there. After reaching New River, supplies could be drawn fromteh Kanawha Valley without serious difficulty. A force occupying that position could co-operate effectually with the Army of the Potomac, and in the event of its success, hjoin and become a part of it. The force necessary to carry out this plan would be no greater than that required to drive the enemy beyondBristol and destroy the railroad beyond that point far enough for defensive purposes, and not very much larger than would have to be left in east Tennessee after the enemy is driven out. The question is, cannot the wholeof the force to be put ont his line be pushed forwrad into Virgnia, continue and active force, and preserve the railroad for our use when we shall have gained possession of Virginia, instead of destroying the railroad and the one-half or more of the force remaining inactive during the remainder of the campaign, while the other half returns all the way to Chattanooga? I desire simply to suggest this question for your consideration. It will doubtless bet ime enough to decide it when we have driven the enemy out of Tennessee. This should, in my opinion, be done as soon as possible. Four or six weeks hence it will be practicable for them to attempt the raid into Kentucky for which they now appear to be preparing. It will then require far more troops to keep the enemy out of Kentucky and Middle Tennessee than it now would to drive him out of Tennessee and render it impossible of rhim to return. The diminution of my command by the removal of the Ninth Corps and the delay in arrival of expected re-enforcements give me some anxiety on this subject. Heretofore I have requested that all re-enforcements be sent me here. In doing so I have relied upon our ability to drive the enemy out of Tennessee before the season when his troops could subsist themsevles during a raid into Kentucky. If my advance be delayed much longer the question will be changed to one of defense and I will be compelled to concentrate troops in Kentucky.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. M. SCHOFIELD,

Major-General.

[32.]

MORRISTOWN, March 15, 1864.

Lieutenant-General GRANT,

Nashville, Tenn.:

The Ninth Army Corps will be sent at once as ordered. I hope troops will be snt me with as little delay as possible. The enemy is still in my immediate front in superior force.*

J. M. SCHOFIELD,

Major-General, Commanding.

[32.]

MORRISTOWN, TENN., March 15, 1864.

Lieutenant-General GRANT,

Nashville:

I want the six infantry regiments here in Tennessee. I do not want the cavalry now because I cannot forage it, but would like to have it ordered to report to General Sturgis at Mount Sterling, Ky. Are the cavalry regiments new or old?+

J. M. SCHOFIELD,

Major-General, Commanding

[32.]

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*This in reply to Grant, 8.30 p. M. VOL. XXXII, Part III, p. 68.

+This in reply to Grant, VOL. XXXII, Part III, p. 76.

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