Today in History:

854 Series I Volume XVII-II Serial 25 - Corinth Part II


nor is is under my command, and I have feared you would be called away.

General Orders, Numbers 140, from the War Department, provides for the organization of a special department for provost-marshals, with a head in Washington to supervise and control the acts of all. This is doubtless intended to render uniform the practice of all such officers throughout the Unite States, and will doubtless embrace the district of Memphis. If you are willing to accept such an office, in preference to the commission you now hold in the volunteer service, it will afford me pleasure to urge your appointment with all the influence I or my friends possess. You are already familiar with the past history of Memphis, and well acquainted with its prominent citizens, and with an established reputation for firmness, courtesy, and decision of character that entitles you to the office if you wish it.

Please examine General Orders, 140, and advise me what you prefer to do. A lieutenant-colonel of an active regiment, you will sooner or later be called away, and I think the interests of the Government require you to remain here at your present post.

I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.

Memphis, October 29, 1862.

Major General W. S. ROSECRANS:

MY DEAR GENERAL: I have been intending to write you, conveying me hearty congratulations at the magnificent victory at Corinth. I know it to have been one of the most important achievements of the war. Its effect was felt by rebels over the whole valley of the Mississippi, and completely disconcerted their plans in Tennessee and Kentucky. A man named Keagg came here yesterday, bearing your letter of October 20, and I have ordered a horse, saddle, &c., to be given him that he may pursue his journey to the south. I have pretty accurate information from that quarter all the time through people who come to Memphis. Holly Springs is, of course, their headquarters. Pemberton arrived, but found Van Dorn and Lovell his seniors. His orders to the Department of Mississippi and Louisiana contemplated Van Dorn and Lovell in Tennessee, but you disappointed them in this, so there is a row in that family. Report has said that to obviate this difficulty Van Dorn and Lovell are to be ordered to Richmond; but last Friday Van Dorn and Lovell were at Holly Springs, and Pemberton had gone back to Jackson, Miss. All hands at Holly Springs are busy reorganizing. A large force of cavalry is near Holly Springs; as nea as I can make out, fifteen regiments, under General [W. H.] Jackson. The infantry are so scattered that it is hard to estimate them, but they have the same force that attacked you, re-enforced by conscripts, also Waul's brigade of Texans, about 4,000; but, on the other hand, Villepigue's brigade has been sent to Meridian. All their dispositions are defensive. They would like to have Memphis, but you taught them to respect heavy batteries, and I have here a pretty line, with twenty-five heavy guns in position and about fifty small guns. My division is now in good drill, and I would like them to attempt my position. I occasionally send my cavalry into their lines, and it makes them very angry.

The evening papers just announced your appointment to the Army of Kentucky. I congratulate you, and assure you of my best wishes