want of adequate strength on our part in Kentucky, the Federal forces should take military possession of that whole State, and even enter and occupy a portion of Tennessee, that a victory gained by this army beyond the Potomac would, by threatening the heart of the Northern States, compel their armies to fall back, free Kentucky, and give us the line of the Ohio within ten days thereafter.
On the other hand, should our forces in Tennessee and Southern Kentucky be strengthened so as to enable us to take and to hold the Ohio River as a boundary, a disastrous defeat of this army would at once be followed by an overwhelming wave of Northern invaders, that would sweep over Kentucky and Tennessee, extending to the northern part of the Cotton States, if not to New Orleans.
Similar views were expressed in regard to ultimate results, in Northwestern Virginia, being dependent upon the success or failure of this army; and various other special illustrations were offered—showing, in short, that
mbus was sent to the unfinished batteries on the upper end of Island No.10, a naturally good and defensible position in New Madrid Bend, and to those on the main Tennessee shore.
The small garrison under Colonel Gantt, at New Madrid, a little town on the Missouri bank of the river, about sixty miles below Columbus, and ten, more otersection of the Memphis and Louisville and Mobile and Ohio Railroads—a point having central relation and railroad communication with the principal towns in west Tennessee and north Mississippi.
A strong line of infantry outposts was established from Union City, on the left, to Lexington, on the right, by the way of Dresden andkson, Tenn., March 2d, 1862.
Dear General,—I send you herewith enclosed a slip showing the intended movements of the enemy, no doubt against the troops in western Tennessee.
I think you ought to hurry up your troops to Corinth by railroad, as soon as practicable, for there or thereabouts will soon be fought the great battle of