OFFICE OF THE CHIEF QUARTERMASTER,
Louisville, Ky., July 1, 1865.
Major General M. C. MEIGS,
Quartermaster-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:
GENERAL: The close of the last fiscal year being virtually a termination of the rebellion, I deem it proper to take a general but very brief retrospect of the transactions of the department over which I have had control since I entered upon duty at Saint Louis in October, 1861. To write a full history of these transactions would be in effect to write a history of the war in the West and Southwest during this period. The scope of an official report would be insufficient to give even an index to a full record of the labor accomplished and the duties performed. Commencing my labors with supplying the scattered and destitute forces under the command of Major-General Fremont, I afterward transported them to points designated for concentration and organization when the command of the West devolved upon Major-General Halleck. Under the active and energetic administration of this officer the fragments of the armies rapidly assumed, shape, no time being lost in preparing them for the field and transpoting them to the theater of action; and now commenced the movements along the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers which resulted in the capture of Forts Henry and Donelson, the battle of Shiloh; the driving of t he enemy from Corinth, and the taking of Columbus, New Madrid, and Island Numbers 10. Simultaneously I supplied the army under Major-General Curtis moving against the rebels, led by Price in Missouri, terminating in the battle of Pea Ridge and the utter discomfiture of the enemy in that region. Following the order of events in this meager outline, I furnished supplies to the armies of Major-Generals Grant and Sherman in the interior of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi, and to forces operating along the Mississippi River under their command, leading to the battles of Chickasaw Bluff, Grand Gulf, Raymond, Jackson, Champion's Hill, the investment and fall of Vicksburg, and capture of Pemberton's army.
Next, I supplied and transported the command which moved up the Arkansas River and captured Arkansas Post, outfitting the expedition under the command of Major-General Steele which operated in Arkansas; kept it constantly supplied, as also the remote and almost inaccessible depots at Forts Smith and Gibson. I transported the command of Major-General Sherman (on his return from Meridian) to Memphis and on his march across the country to join Major-General Grant at Chattanooga. I had steamer sin readiness at Eastport to cross the command over the Tennessee River without an hour's delay, a foresight which facilitated the march and enabled the command to reach Chattanooga just in season to participate in the battle and victory of Mission Ridge. I fitted out the several cavalry expeditions which operated in Eastern Tennessee, Kentucky, Southwestern Virginia, and North Carolina under the commands of Major-Generals Stoneman, Burbridge, and others. I furnished the supplies for the troops in New Mexico, and on the plains, andfitted out the several Indian expeditions under the command of Major-General Sully. The depot at Nashville derived its principal stores from purchases made by myself and officers serving under my orders. It drew heavily upon the resources of the country already partially exhausted by the requisitions from other quarters. The heaviest items were purchased at remote points-remote, I mean, from the base of operations-and the transportation monopolized and