April 20, 1864: Banks still retreating.

Ulysses S. Grant

Stanton informs Grant more about Banks’ troubles, and Banks continues to retreat.

Official Records:


WAR DEPARTMENT,
April 20, 1864 – 10.35 a. m.
Lieutenant-General GRANT, Culpeper:

Detailed telegraphic reports from Chicago, which you will see in this morning’s Chronicle, represent General Stone to have been in command as chief of Banks’ staff at the time of Banks’ disaster, and that the operations were against the remonstrance of General Ransom,, who is badly wounded.

EDWIN M. STANTON.

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FIELD ORDERS, HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, Numbers 25.
Grand Ecore, La., April 20, 1864.

1. The troops of his command, on receiving final orders to march, which will be issued hereafter, will move under the control and direction of Major General W. B. Franklin, commanding Nineteenth Army Corps, & c. The rear will be brought up by troops of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Army Corps, commanded by Brigadier General A. J. Smith. The requirements of circular letters of yesterday’s date as to rations and forage, the readiness of the troops, trains, & c., to march at an hour’s notice, will be strictly enforced.

* * * * * * *

By command of Major-General Banks:
GEO. B. DRAKE,
Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF,
Grand Ecore, April 20, 1864.
Brigadier General A. J. SMITH,
Commanding Detachment Sixteenth and Seventeenth Corps:

The commanding general directs that you move at 12 o’clock to-day, with your entire force of infantry and artillery to Natchitoches.
You are directed to take position to repel any attack of the enemy. The force here will be ready to support you in case you meet any considerable force of the enemy. Your pickets should connect with those already established.
I am, general, your obedient servant,

WILLIAM DWIGHT,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.

P. S. – You will please keep these headquarters fully informed of the condition, force, and movements of the enemy in your front on your march and after you assume position.

Respectfully,
W. DWIGHT,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Staff.

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