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[594]

Van Dorn will be able to hold his own with about twenty thousand on the Mississippi. Price stays here with sixteen thousand. Thus you have my plan. I leave to-morrow for Mobile, thence to Chattanooga. Our cavalry is paving the way for me in Middle Tennessee and Kentucky. Crittenden is quite a prize; and the whole affair, in proportion to numbers, more brilliant than the grand battles where ‘strategy’ seems to have been the staple production on --both sides; and, if I am any judge, the enemy beat us at it. We may congratulate ourselves that McClellan was satisfied with changing his base, for it occurs to my obtuse mind that a bold stroke at Richmond, while we were hunting for him, would have ruined us.

The papers seem to be groping in the dark as to the reasons which influenced the change here, and attributing motives to each of us never entertained by either. Fortunately we know each other too well, and have this cause too much at heart, to be influenced by these things. Hoping for your restoration and return,

Truly yours,


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