the absence of Colonel Davis from the command temporarily assigned him here. As requested, Colonel Davis will be ordered to fall back and meet you on your march. General Floyd will detach from your command all the forces not belonging to your Legion, hence the detachment of artillery at these headquarters is not included in his order in respect to your command.
As stated in a former communication to you, General Floyd is deficient in the means of transportation. If, however, he ascertains to-morrow morning that he can spare any wagons, it will afford him very great pleasure to place them at your command.
By order of Brigadier General John B. Floyd, commanding forces, & c.:
WILLIAM E. PETERS,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Floyd's Brigade.
MANASSAS, August 19, 1861.
To the PRESIDENT:
Mr. PRESIDENT: On the 22nd of July, just before Brigadier-General Holmes returned to Fredericksburg, he, General Beauregard, and myself agreed as to the expediency of erecting at Evansport a work capable of resisting a coup de main. This work, it was further agreed, General Holmes was to have constructed immediately. He selected for its armament five of the captured guns, the 30-pounder and two small Parrott rifles, and two 12-pounder howitzers, which I had sent to him a day or two after. I was much surprised yesterday to learn that the work had not been commenced. We think it of great importance; that its effect would be to prevent the turning that position on its right by the enemy. It will therefore be begun by us. The guns which General Holmes still has should be sent to the place, however, and for the thorough command of the Potomac three or four of the large rifles, which it is understood have been made in Richmond, should be added, and a detachment from Fredericksburg might, I think, be advantageously employed in conjunction with ours.
While on this subject may I suggest that this frontier of the Potomac would better form one command than two? Colonel Wigfall has reported, and without other field officers. I was glad to find it so, because it gives me a hope that you will believe that my Texan friend, R. A. Howard, is the fittest Texan living for military service. He served with me four years in Texas on Indian service. In that I formed the highest opinion of his military character - an opinion which I shared with his West Point associates of highest standing, such as Whiting, Bee, and E. K. Smith. He accompanied Bee in the recent campaign. In the battle I had an opportunity to observe him, and was delighted with his conduct and enthusiastic courage. Colonel Wigfall says that this appointment would be agreeable to him.
We hear of several officers as in Richmond who would be of great value here, Colonels Van Dorn and Walker among them. We require more brigade commanders. It seems to me that our whole strength is to be put forth. In this connection let me recommend as two of the best officers whose services we can command, G. W. Smith and Lovell. They are as fit to command divisions as any men in our service. Smith is a man of high ability, fit to command in chief. These two have not come forward, because, not belonging to seceded States, they didn't know how officers would be received. Perhaps they have not taken the right course. At any rate they have always wanted to serve.