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      Battle Of
       West Point
 Wilson's Raids

Destroy Transportation Routes

    On the 6th of February a communication was received fromStoneman Lieutenant-General Grant, directing an expedition, commanded by General Stoneman, to be sent from East Tennessee to penetrate North Carolina, and well down toward Columbia, S.C., to destroy the enemy's railroads and military resources in that section, and visit a portion of the State beyond the control or reach of General Sherman's column. As the movement was to be merely for the purpose of destruction, directions were given General Stoneman to evade any heavy engagements with the enemy's forces.

        Again, on the 13th of February, General Grant telegraphed me to prepare a cavalry expedition, about 10,000 strong, to penetrate Northern Alabama, acting as a co-operative force to the movement on Mobile by General Canby. Before leaving Eastport, Miss., I had directed General Wilson to get his command in readiness for just such a campaign, of which the above was simply an outline, my instructions being for him to move on Tuscaloosa, Selma, and Montgomery, Ala., and to capture those places if possible, after accomplishing which he was to operate against any of the enemy's forces in the direction of Mississippi, Mobile, or Macon, as circumstances might demand. The bad state of the roads, combined with the condition of the horses of his command after completing the severe campaign in pursuit of Hood, prevented any movement for the time being, and it was only on the 22nd of March that General Wilson, with Upton's, Long's, and McCook's divisions, could leave Chickasaw, Alabama.

        Hatch's division remained at Eastport, Mississippi, and R. W. Johnson's at Pulaski, Tennessee, it not being possible to mount them fully, to hold the country and prevent guerrilla depredations. When General Sherman was organizing his army for its march to the Atlantic sea-board, in November, he issued an order directing me to assume control of all the forces of the Military Division of the Mississippi not present with him and the main army in Georgia. Based on that order, all the operations of the troops within the limits of the above-mentioned military division have, during the interval, been made under my immediate direction, and I have been held responsible for their faithful execution.

  Next Page    Move to Selma and Montgomery

 

Source:

Reports for Wilson's raid to Selma 22 March - 22 April 65 plus Wilson's capture of Jefferson Davis 10 May 65, http://www.aotc.net/selma-rep.htm