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[154] army, which had been advancing, was retiring, and in a few hours the immediate cause became known --the destruction of the Federal depot at Holly Springs, by Major-General Van Dorn. That officer, with three thousand cavalry, surprised the garrison at daybreak, took two thousand prisoners, and destroyed the large stores of provision and ammunition, and six thousand muskets.

The approach of the expedition against Vicksburg, under Major-General Sherman's command, being reported by Lieutenant-General Pemberton's scouts, the detachments of Stevenson's division were sent to that place as they arrived by railroad. The last of them did not reach Jackson until the 7th of January, although the management of the railroad trains was at least as good as usual in such cases.

After exhorting the Legislature, in a fervent address, to take all the measures necessary to enable the Governor to bring out the whole remaining military force of the State to aid the Confederate troops in the defense of its soil, Mr. Davis returned to Richmond.

Being convinced, before he left Jackson, that my command was little more than nominal, I so represented it to him, and asked to be assigned to a different one, on the ground that two armies far apart, like those of Mississippi and Tennessee, having different objects, and opposed to adversaries having different objects, could not be commanded by the same general. After reflection, he replied that the seat of government was so distant from the two theatres of war, that he thought it necessary to have an officer nearer, with authority to transfer troops

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