State in January, reported to General Cooper that "the condition of affairs is deplorable. Large numbers of deserters infest the country, robbing friend and foe indiscriminately. The condition of the citizen is pitiful in the extreme. Dismounted Confederate cavalry steal his horses, while a dastard foe robs him of food and clothing. Grain cannot be ground and food cannot be purchased. Our cavalry are vigilant and successful in arresting the citizen whose wants compel him to send his bale of cotton to Memphis to procure the food necessary to existence, but fail to molest the professional blockader who makes merchandise of treason."
Late in January French's division, including Sears' brigade, was ordered to Mobile. On February 3d, Gen. Marcus J. Wright was assigned by General Forrest to command of north Mississippi and west Tennessee, and south Mississippi and east Louisiana were put under charge of Gen. Wirt Adams. General Chalmers was assigned to the command of all Mississippi cavalry, to be known as Chalmers' division, and the Tennessee and other cavalry were consolidated under Gen. W. H. Jackson.
The Mississippi cavalry commands were organized as follows: Gen. F. C. Armstrong's brigade — First regiment, Col. R. A. Pinson; Second, Col. E. Dillon; Seventh and Ballentine's regiment consolidated, Colonel Ballentine; Ashcraft's regiment, Colonel Ashcraft; detachment Twelfth regiment; five companies Fifth regiment; Eighth regiment, Col. T. W. White.
Gen. Wirt Adams' brigade: Col. R. C. Wood's regiment; Thirty-Eighth, Col. P. Brent; Ninth, Col. H. H. Miller; Col. J. McQuirk's regiment; Fourteenth Confederate, Colonel Dumonteil; Moorman's battalion; Twenty- third battalion; Powers' regiment.
Gen. P. B. Starke's brigade: Fourth regiment, Colonel Wilbourn; Sixth, Ninth, Tenth and Eighth Confederate, Col. W. B. Wade; Twenty-eighth, Major McBee;