in your department to Goldsborough. The battalions of Louisiana and Georgia Volunteers which you forwarded, to report to General Anderson, it is presumed were sent in lieu of the regiments of Colonels Clarke and Armistead; it was not intended that more should be sent than were specified in telegrams of 19th. As regards the regiment of Colonel Leventhorpe, stationed at Hamilton, about which you yesterday telegraphed, I do not see that much can be gained in keeping him at that place. Should the enemy attack him, so small a force could do but little to resist him, and would afford no material impediment to his further progress. It would seem much more desirable to concentrate the troops nearer the railroad and keep them light and movable, so as to re-enforce readily any point of the road he might seriously threaten. The guns and all other munitions at Hamilton should of course be removed, and could be devoted to the strengthening of other points of defense in your department.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE,
Unless wanted elsewhere in your department, it is suggested to send the section of Captain Bruce's artillery which was at Hamilton to Goldsborough, where it is likely to be much needed.
HDQRS. DISTRICT OF THE CAPE FEAR, Numbers 13.
Wilmington, N. C., March 22, 1862.
The undersigned, by virtue of Special Orders, Numbers 60, Adjutant and Inspector General's Office, Richmond, dated March 15, 1862, hereby assumes command of the District of the Cape Fear, embracing the counties of New Hanover, Onslow, Brunswick, Robeson, Cumberland, Bladen, Columbus, and Sampson.
S. G. FRENCH,
Major General T. H. HOLMES,
Commanding, &c., Richmond, Va.:
GENERAL: You will proceed with the troops under your command to Goldsborough, N. C., and take command of the operations in that department. It will be your object to make arrangements to ascertain whether the enemy whole force to repel them and to protect the railroad. Orders will be issued placing you in command, and the troops from the Department of Northern Virginia will be forwarded to you as soon as possible.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE,
ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, Numbers 67.
Richmond, March 24, 1862.
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XXVI. Major General Theophilus H. Holmes is assigned to the command