The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant: April-September 1861 - Vol. 2

By John Y. Simon | Go to book overview

mont telegraphed to USG. "Your dispatch of to day not understood. Send telegraphic dispatches to me direct, Keep me minutely and frequently advised." Copies, ibid., Western Dept., Telegrams; DLC-USG, VIA, 1. Also on Sept. 1, Frémont telegraphed to Col. Richard J. Oglesby, 8th Ill. "Say to Gen'l McClernand that Col: Wallace is not to move until Gen'l Prentiss be heard from. Up to noon to day Grant had not heard from Prentiss—" Copies, ibid.

1.
No letter from USG to Kelton of Aug. 31 has been found. USG may refer to a Sept. 1 letter of Capt. William S. Hillyer to Kelton. "I am directed by Brig Gen Grant Commanding at Cape Girardeau to report to you that on yesterday after noon he received information which he deems reliable that the enemy has abandoned his positions at Benton—near Commerce and Saxton and is rapidly retreating towards New madrid, with the intention of concentrating his force at the last named place—this information is derived from several sources, each corroborating the others—the first information was derived from a union man who had been taken prisoner by the enemy and was released with a pass from 'Jeff Thompson, Comd M. S. G.,' and who brought a proposition from 'Thomp- son' for the exchange of prisoners. Gen Grant declined to entertain any com- munication from 'Thompson.' I left Cape Girardeau about 7 o'clock last evening (Aug 31) on board Government Steamer Louisiana. Gen Grant directed me to report further that he would have made this report himself, but the steamer ar- rived as he was about to write it, and he did not think it necessary to detain her, as the report could be made through me. Up to the time I left Cape Girardeau, no information had been received at Head Quarters of the junction of the forces under Gen Prentiss with the forces under Col Marsh at Jackson, but the informa- tion was hourly expected. Gen Grant yesterday ordered the part of Col Marsh 20th Illinois Regiment stationed at Cape Girardea[u] to move this morning and join the detachment under Col Marsh at Jackson, and instructed] Col Marsh upon their arrival to send back the detachment of the 11th Missouri under his command, to Cape Girardeau. The force of the enemy retreating from Benton & Commerce is reported as 6000 men. All which is respectfully submitted." ALS, DNA, RG 393, Western Dept., Letters Received.
2.
Charleston, Mo., about twelve miles southwest of Cairo, Ill.
To Capt. John C. Kelton
Head Quarters
Cape Girardeau Mo.
September 1 st 1861
SIR:

Gen. Prentiss has just arrived. Will move the column under his command to Sikeston as soon as possible. I will go to Birds Point and take command there and push out from that point.

-165-

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