Thursday, September 8, 1864

ATLANTA, GA., September 8, 1864: 8 a.m.

Honorable E. M. STANTON, Secretary of War:
My whole army will be encamped round about Atlanta during today, and I have promised them some rest and pay. All the army has eight months’ pay due, and the paymaster now tells me the money
is not on hand. This army should be paid at once, and it would create discontent if others were preferred to them. I believe and shall assure all that the money will be here as soon as the rolls are made up and it is safe to bring it.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General

Major General H. W. HALLECK, Washington, D. C.:
General Thomas is in, and his troops are now grouping about Atlanta. General Schofield has also arrived, and has gone to place his troops at Decatur. I have not yet heard from General Howard, but suppose him to be at East Point. I have just ridden to see a portion of the enemy’s line, which is very strong, and demonstrates the wisdom of our mode and manner of attack.

I have but little news of Wheeler, except that last night General Steedman was at Athens, Alabama and Wheeler was supposed to be crossing the Tennessee toward the south about Lamb’s Ferry. Rousseau, Granger, and Steedman have enough troops to handle Wheeler, and I suppose the railroad will soon be repaired. We have enough stores for a month, and I feel no uneasiness on that score. Yet, if necessary, I can send some troops to the rear.

I telegraphed you yesterday that you could use General A. J. Smith, as proposed, to act against Price in Missouri. We are all well, and have no doubt, after a short rest, will be impatient again to sally forth in search of adventure.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General

General WEBSTER, Nashville:
Don’t let any citizens come to Atlanta, not one. I won’t allow trade or manufactures of any kind, but will remove all the present population and make Atlanta a pure military town. Give public notice to this effect. General Thomas’ army is now in and around Atlanta, General Howard’s at East Point, and General Schofield’s at Decatur.
I want Wheeler cleaned out, the roads repaired, and everything to the rear made right. Send forward paymasters. If the Sanitary Commission have stores let them be sent to the agent at Chattanooga, whence we can draw as fast as we need. Hood’s army retreated toward Macon, but will, I suppose, halt about Griffin. I was unprepared to follow below Lovejoy’s, twenty-eight miles south of Atlanta, for we have been fighting constantly since about the 7th of May, and the men need rest and quiet. Our last move was beautiful and perfectly successful, as you observe from our occupation of the famous Atlanta. We have already found nineteen guns and others are being found daily. At Jonesborough, at the battle, we took 2 four-gun batteries, and in the whole move have near 3,000 prisoners. We killed about 500 at Jonesborough and wounded about 2,500. Our entire loss since beginning the movement will not exceed 1,500.
W. T. SHERMAN,Major-General, Commanding

Webster Replies:

Your dispatch of this date received. I suppose you do not mean to exclude sutlers from Atlanta. Cannot get particulars from General Rousseau. He fought Wheeler thirteen miles below Columbia and beat him on Monday. He is following him and must now be near the Tennessee River. Williams’ rebel force is below, south of Wheeler’s, followed by Milroy. Granger and Starkweather are moving and the rebels must be pressed if they cannot get over the river. We have so little cavalry that it is difficult to follow them. The railroad to Chattanooga will be open again on Saturday, we hope, when Donaldson will push forward supplies. Accept my hearty congratulations on the glorious success of your successful campaign. All well.
J. D. WEBSTER, Brigadier-General

General Miller Reports from Nashville:

Dispatches from General Rousseau, at Athens, received this evening, state that Wheeler with all his force, excepting Williams’ division, is west of Tennessee and Alabama Railroad, in vicinity of Rogersville, near Tennessee River. Monday, Rousseau defeated Wheeler badly at Campbellsville, from whence he retreated to Lawrenceburg, where part of Rousseau’s force attacked him on Tuesday morning, routing him again. Colonel Streight has gone toward Rogersville with 2,500 infantry and two pieces of artillery. Granger is also moving against Wheeler with infantry. General Rousseau this afternoon, with cavalry and artillery, moved toward Rogersville from Athens.

General Steedman is said to be at Pulaski with 3,000 infantry. Rousseau’s dispatch states that Roddey has joined Wheeler. Doolittle telegraphs from Decatur, Roddey has returned to Courtland. Milroy is pursuing Williams with about 1,600 cavalry, a force equal to Williams’. Nothing heard from Milroy of Williams for two days. Milroy was then moving on Williams from Columbia, Williams going eastward after failing to join Wheeler. Milroy whipped Williams at Triune, and can do it again anywhere. Everything seems to be working well. Great joy over the capture of Atlanta

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