He appealed to the War Department, ‘for the sake of our cause and country,’ to send, at once, Colonel Mackall
as major-general, and three officers recommended by him for brigadiers, with Colonel Ransom
to take charge of the cavalry.
He was informed that Colonel Mackall
had been nominated for brigadier, and that all officers designed for promotion must be selected from among those of his own present army.
As General Beauregard
had then with him very few graduates of West Point
, or of other military schools, or officers of any experience, he answered, on the 7th, that he knew of none to recommend; but he forwarded, for immediate action, a list containing the names of two major-generals
and six brigadiers, suggested by Generals Bragg
; and, as there was still no cavalry colonel to recommend, he repeated his application for Colonel Ransom
On the 8th he also asked that either Colonel R. B. Lee
or Major Williams
, of his former Army of Virginia, be sent him, for the important duties of Chief Commissary
, as he had, in his present command, no officers of equal experience to select from; and he earnestly inquired whether Major G. W. Brent
would be sent him for inspector, as he needed the services of such an officer almost hourly.
The reply came, that the promotions as general officers could not be made until he recommended them from his own personal experience of their merits.
The existing state of affairs had become all the more embarrassing for the reason that General Beauregard
's scouts reported large forces of the enemy moving, in transports, up the Tennessee River
, with the probability of an early landing, at any moment.
He, therefore, overlooking the discourtesy shown and the annoyance occasioned him by the War Department, asked that permission be given him to appoint acting brigadiers and major-generals, to supply the immediate wants of his army.
He again received an unfavorable reply.
His request, said the War Department, was irregular and unauthorized by law. Not knowing what further step to take, he telegraphed General Cooper
, unofficially, that if the officers he had applied for the day before were denied him (so disastrous might be the consequences, from the fact that part of his forces were in a state of chaos, and his health too greatly affected to allow him, if unaided, to establish order around him), he would forthwith request to be relieved from his present command.
The obstructive policy of the government so palpably thwarted his efforts and endangered