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[234] Bragg's army, but, on the contrary, you were clearly informed that you were considered the proper person to withdraw troops from it, if you deemed it judicious.

XIV. On the 8th June the Secretary was more explicit, if possible. He said: “Do you advise more reinforcements from General Bragg? You, as commandant of the department, have power so to order, if you in view of the whole case so determine.”

XV. On the 10th June you answered that it was for the Government to determine what department could furnish the reenforcements; that you could not know how General Bragg's wants compared with yours, and that the Government could make the comparison.

XVI. Your statement that the Government in Richmond was better able to judge of the relative necessities of the armies under your command than you were, and the further statement that you could not know how General Bragg's wants compared with yours, were considered extraordinary; but, as they were accompanied by the remark that the Secretary's dispatch had been imperfectly deciphered, no observation was made on them till the receipt of your telegram to the Secretary, of the 12th instant, stating: “ I have not considered myself commanding in Tennessee since assignment here, and should not have felt authorized to take troops from that department after having been informed by the Executive that no more could be spared.”

XVII. My surprise at these two statements was extreme. You had never been “assigned” to the Mississippi command, you went there under the circumstances


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