OR, Series 1, Vol. 10, Part 2, Page 591

Headquarters Porter's Partisans
Holly Spring
June 6, 1862
 
General G. T. Beauregard
Commanding Western Department
 
General,
   Acting under your orders, I have caused to be burned in Fayette, Shelby, and Tipton Counties, Tennessee, and Marshall and De Soto Counties, Mississippi, upwards of 30,000 bales of cotton. My men have met with but little opposition. In obedience to your order I caused to be removed from Somerville, Tenn.,to this place, when I felt constrained to fall back, two wagon loads of harness and four wagons and teams belonging to Confederate States.
   My scouts have just returned from the vicinities of Somerville, Bolivar, and Grand Junction. They report the enemy advancing from Bolivar toward Grand Junction.
   The operator at Grand Junction telegraphed late this evening that the head of the column was at Middleburg, advancing on Grand Junction. It occurred to me their purpose was to get possession of the Government Armory at this place. I have advised the officer in charge of the armory to pack up all guns on hand and to be ready to remove the machinery at a moment's notice.
   The president of the Mississippi Central Railroad will afford every facility for the removal of all valuable property.
   Shall I continue to burn cotton likely to fall into the hands of the enemy? In case the enemy advances toward this place shall I burn bridges on the Mississippi Central Railroad? If they advance from Grand Junction toward Memphis, shall I burn bridges on the Memphis & Charleston Railroad?
   Since my company was raised, by authority of the Secretary of War, issued before the conscript law, I have been so constantly occupied with carrying out your orders that I have had no opportunity to draw clothing, arms, or equipments. May I draw them at the first place I find them?
   I have 150 men, almost all large planters. I have applications every day for membership.  May I increase my command to 300 or 500?
   For character, qualifications, and energy, I respectfully refer to Col. Thomas Peters, brigade quartermaster to General Polk; Brig. Gen. Jones M. Withers (as to faithfulness); Maj. Gen. John C. Breckinridge (for character). If necessary I can multiply references.
   Hoping that the responsibilities I have assumed may meet with your approbation and that you will give me definite instructions as to what you wish me to do, I remain,
Ed. E. Porter
Captain

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