Wilmington, N. C., April 7, 1863.
Major General D. H. HILL,
Cross-Roads, 3 miles south of Washington, N. C.:
GENERAL: I wish I had some 10-pounder Parrotts for you, but we have never had any of those guns though I have frequently applied for them. My field artillery is wretched, being mostly smooth-bore and howitzers. I hope you will be successful, but fear they will be enabled to re-enforce. Beauregard reports all the monitors off the bar at Charleston. Secretary of War ordered me to hold Ransom in readiness to move. I referred the dispatch to Longstreet.
W. H. C. WHITING,
WILMINGTON, N. C., April 7, 1863.
Secretary of War has ordered Evans' brigade to be ready to move. Action commenced at Charleston. I must have some troops to replace them if they go; it will not do to leave this place bare.
W. H. C. WHITING,
WAR DEPARTMENT, C. S. A.,
Richmond, April 8, 1863.
General JAMES LONGSTREET, Petersburg, Va.:
I would not have you abstain from offensive operation. They may effect as much by diversion as more direct aid. Still if you can arrange to spare one brigade (say Evans') for Wilmington I should be much pleased. The arrangement to send one forward in case of necessity was known to General Beauregard and General Whiting prior to your command, and I supposed had been communicated to you.
J. A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War.
HEADQUARTERS, April 8, 1863-3 p. m.
Major General D. H. HILL, Commanding, &c.:
GENERAL: Let me suggest that you have your fort so arranged that you will be able to put your guns out of fire from the gunboats if it should become necessary. By having your platforms high you can put your guns on them when in action, and if the enemy's guns have a longer range than yours you can run your guns down under the parapet so as tog et them out of fire; or you might have pits alongside your platforms so as to run your guns out of fire. We must not expect to contend against the enemy in ammunition, so it may become necessary for your to occupy the fort merely to keep back the enemy's transports or only to play upon the gunboats when they are in close range. If you can cut General Foster off from New Berne by using Evans' brigade at Wilmington, do not hesitate to do so. Your force in North Carolina must