Zheng-tong: Year 13, Month 5, Day 6
6 Jun 1448
The Jing-yuan Earl Wang Ji, Minister of War and supreme commander of Yun-nan military affairs, and others, memorialized: "In proceeding on expedition against the bandit son Si Ji-fa in Meng-yang, we will be separated from him by the Jin-sha River. We will have to build boats to cross it and that will take about 10 days. I am afraid that the bandit followers will thus be able to flee far away. Recently, it has been heard that there are leather boats held in the Nan-jing store. It is requested that these be despatched and transported so that the army can use them to cross the river." The Emperor conferred orders upon them. The orders read: "It is an extremely long way from Nan-jing to Yun-nan and transport is very difficult. Also, it is considered that the use of leather boats in that place will not be very appropriate. From ancient times, those who were good at employing troops were skilled in providing what the troops needed from where they were. If they were separated from their goal by mountains or rivers, they used the ideas of their forces and made plans as the situations dictated. In this way, they were able to reach their goals. If you do need boats and oars to cross the river there, when you first get to Yun-nan you should secretly send able officers to take command of the government troops and native troops under nearby defence commandants, as well as to urge on local man and yi chieftains, and have them manufacture the boats in the upper reaches ready for your use."
Zhong-yang Yan-jiu yuan Ming Shi-lu, volume 29, page 3208/09