Head Qrs Dep't of the Tenn:
Before Vicksburg, March 12, 1863
BRIG: GEN'L W. A. HAMMOND
SURGEON GENERAL U. S. A.
Surg: J. R. Smiths letter of the 20th of February, is just received inquiring into the Sanitary condition of this command, and asking for suggestions for its improvement. 1 I know a great deal has been said to impress the public generally, and all officials particularly, with the idea that this Army was in a suffering condition, and mostly from neglect. This is most erroneous. The health of this command will compare favorably with that of any Army in the field, I venture to say, and every preparation is made for the sick that could be desired.
I venture the assertion that no Army ever went into the field with better arranged preparations for receiving sick and wounded soldiers than this. We have Hospital Boats expressly fitted up, and with the Government and Volunteer Sanitary supplies, it is a great question whether one person in ten can be so well taken care of at their homes as the Army here can.