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About six P. m., on the 16th, while on the retreat, the following communication was handed to me:

Camp Seven Miles from Jackson, May 14, 1863.
The body of troops, mentioned in my note of last night compelled Brigadier-General Gregg and his command to evacuate Jackson about noon to-day; the necessity of taking the Canton road, at right angles to that upon which the enemy approaches, prevented an obstinate defense. A body of troops, reported this morning to have reached Raymond last night, advanced at the same time from that direction.

Prisoners say that it was McPherson's corps (four divisions) which marched from Clinton. I have certain information of the other; both skirmished very cautiously. Telegrams were dispatched, when the enemy was near, directing General Gist to assemble the approaching troops at a point forty or fifty miles from Jackson, and General Maxcey to return to his wagons and provide for the security of his brigade; for instance, by joining General Gist. That body of troops will be able, I hope, to prevent the enemy in Jackson from drawing provision from the East, and this one may be able to keep him from the country toward Panola. Can he supply himself from the Mississippi a Can you not cut him off from it; and, above all, should he be compelled to fall back for want of supplies, beat him? As soon as the reenforcements are all up, they must be united to the rest of the army. I am anxious to see a force assembled, that they be able to inflict a heavy blow upon the enemy.

Would it not be better to place the forces to support Vicksburg between General Loring and that place, and merely observe the ferries, so that you might unite if opportunity to fight presented itself? General Gregg will move toward Canton to-morrow. If prisoners tell the truth, the force at Jackson must be half of Grant's army. It would decide the campaign to beat it, which can only be done by concentrating, especially when the remainder of

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