you for special duty in your front and between the Neuse and Tar.
If the enemy have amovable force, we must have one likewise, or continue to see these raids upon the railroad and farms of the country. Infantry and artillery only defend themselves, and we cannot divide forces of that description so as to cover every available point. I should prefer the concentration of most of your forces at or near Kinston, with a force at Tarborough and an outpost at Greenville.
But I shall rely on your greater knowledge of the country and its thoroughfares. I think if you get Baker`s regiment, you will be able to prevent the road being cut again.
We have no very important news from Charleston. I do not like the enemy being permitted to remain on Morris Island, though Battery Wagner still holds out.
The force here is very small, entirely inadequate to the extent of command. of course, if the enemy turn their attention to Wilmington, as they will if Charleston falls, we shall require large re-enforcements to hope for successful defense.
I have sent two excellent officers, Colonel [Robert] Tansill and Major [T. B.] Venable, on a tour of reconnaissance. I hope you will be able to serve them.
At present, engaged as I am here, I cannot come up and see you:
will try and do so as soon as possible.
Very truly, yours,
W. H. C. WHITING,
Front Royal, July 23, 1863-5. 30 p. m.
GENERAL: The enemy is in heavy force. Rodes is in position. They are advancing through Manassas Gap, along the railroad, to get at the pontoon bridges. By what time can you be up? If you cannot cross to-night, the bridge will be taken up and sent back by way of Cedarville to strasburg, to go with you, and be put down above, where you cross the river.
Send me word by courier, to ride rapidly, by what hour you will be here, or whether you go by Strasburg.
I am, general, yours, & c.,
A. S. PENDLETON,
[P. S.]-I will send another courier in an hour.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA,
Dublin, July 23, 1863.
Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: For some time previous to your call on me for 3, 000 infantry and two field batteries, I had kept on, and convenient to, this railroad