you a letter I received this morning from Captain Selfridge—I am going to send another gun boat." LS, DNA, RG 393, Dept. of the Tenn., Letters Received. Porter enclosed a letter of Feb. 14 from Lt. Commander Thomas O. Selfridge, Jr., Conestoga, reporting the activities of C. S. A. batteries on the Arkansas River. ALS, ibid.
Feby 16th 1863
LT COL C A REYNOLDS
On your arrival at Memphis seize all transports coming into port for the use of the Army here except such as are absolutely necessary for carrying Government supplies from above. When it becomes praticable to release any boats again give those boats the preferance that have been constantly in Goverment employ Two boats may be continued in the trade between Memphis and Cairo subject to seizure any time Goverment may require their services I would suggest however that the boats now running in that trade be taken and others substituted. Boats will be required here to transport a large army and nearly all at one time This must occupy your particular attention
U S GRANT Maj Gen
Copies, DLC-USG, V, 18, 30; DNA, RG 393, Dept. of the Tenn., Letters Sent. On Feb. 19, 1863, Capt. John V. Lewis, Memphis, wrote to Lt. Col. Charles A. Reynolds. "A copy of General Grants letter to you dated 16th Inst has been referred to me, and in reply to the same I have the honor to report that in my opinion it is neccessary to have not less than eight steamers of large size run regularly between this point and St Louis, Mo, and not less than three between this point and Cincinnati Ohio that the Army of the Tennessee may exist; and that they may be allowed to run on their own account, as from my experience I have learned that many unneccessary delays arise when Steamers are employed by the day. As far as I can ascertain all arewilling to carry both troops and freight at the contract rates, made not long since with the sanction of Col. Robt. Allen Chief Q. M. at St Louis, Mo." ALS, Parsons Papers, IHi. This letter, favorably endorsed by Reynolds and by Capt. Asher R. Eddy, was also endorsed by USG. "Refered to Col. Parsons. The number of boats asked may be released