The Strength of the Yankees on the Mississippi.
--An intelligent correspondent, writing to the Mobile Tribune
, says that the number of the Federal
forces on the Mississippi
is greatly exaggerated.
From authentic sources, I have formed estimates which I think you will find more reliable then the extravagant statements published.
The disposable force of Grant
does not exceed 40,000 men. With these he will have to defend the two banks of the river, and to pursue and destroy Johnston
and Kirlty Smith
's armies, and to maintain a strong garrison at Vicksburg
and at other points.
He can get no reinforcements — he has exhausted all these.
has not 15,000 all told, to hold Louisiana
, and he haste garrison New Orleans, Port Hudson
and the forts.
The force in the field does not exceed that which Taylor
and Magrader can bring to bear against him. Those Generals
already hold the western part of Louisiana
; if Banks
pursues them to the interior he leaves a weak force on the river and our light troops can operate with great effect.
Whilst our armies must increase, those of the enemy must diminish.--Vicksburg
has already cost General Grant
half his original army.