July 26 1863. I had received two letters from the Superintendent of Military Railroads, Gen. Webster asking about my plans for reopening the railroads in Mississippi. I replied,
HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE TENN., Vicksburg, MISS., July 26, 1863.
Brigadier General J. D. WEBSTER, Supt. Military Railroads:
GENERAL: Your two letters of the 20th just received. * In regard to opening the railroad east from Corinth, I am not yet prepared to say whether any move will be required. With the present force in West Tennessee, it would not be possible to give adequate protection to extensions beyond Corinth.
I am anxiously waiting for some general plan of operations from Washington. It is important that the troops of different departments should act in concert; hence the necessity of general instructions coming from one head.
Nothing is required from above for the road here. We captured five locomotives in Vicksburg and a number of cars. Only 11 miles of the road is being used, and that only for army purposes. All that will have to be supplied hereafter by this road will be 2,000 or 3,000 men Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT.
The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 9, p 122
O.R., I, xxiv, part 3, p 552-3