The war continues to rage in the deep South, and General Pierre G. T. Beauregard has been engaged with the forces of Union General William Rosecrans. Rosecrans objective has been to wrench control of the Mississippi River from the Rebels, and in order to do this he needs to capture the vital port city of Vicksburg, Mississippi. The following letter, written to Beauregard from Rebel General Thomas Jordan. Beauregard’s career was tainted by constant friction with the President, and Jordan offers encouragement and advice on how to handle Jefferson Davis and Congress.
Sept 7th 1862
My Dear General
Of course I shall wish to go with you, wheresoever you may be ordered—Charleston, or elsewhere; and shall anxiously await the time when I may be with you again—Call me by telegraph.
Let me keep the papers about Vicksburg all together until a week when I will present a brief statement which you can sign officially and transmit to the War Department—it can then be called for by Congress and in that way best come before the public in an official shape that will place definitively the credit for the fortification of Vicksburg where it rightfully belongs.
The fact is—the Mississippi party including the President wish to claim credit for fortifying and making the stand at Vicksburg, but the truth is that you, of your volition & without suggestion determined to fortify it—and anticipated in your first instructions—the Yankee attempt to cut a canal—the record is complete—and I am strongly in favor of the official report rather than any other publications.
I have been suffering a good deal lately from Rheumatism but shall be able to do what work you will have at first at Charleston.
The [illeg.] to Charleston is transparent to purpose but it should always be remembered: “Man proposes but God disposes”—and you can go to your assignment post satisfied that in the end all will work out rightly—This inst. Genl Joe Johnston has been ordered to “a new field”—Whither? We shall see. I am impatient to hear the details of the last Manassa battle—I hope we have not exaggerated the results.
Buell appears to have blundered in Tennessee—surely he and& Rozencranz might have effected a sudden junction somewhere in the quarter of Columbia and with these united & largely superior force [illeg.] to overwhelm Genl. Braggs forces—It was certainly in the power of Rozencrantz to have thrown his forces quietly across the Tennessee at Pittsburg Landing & to have made the March & junction without our knowledge until too late—but they have not tried it– & I feel now Buell is in retreat to Kentucky.
Kirby [illeg.] successes are important as they must weaken the enemy so as to make it possible to strike him in detail.
I write in haste