RICHLMOND, May 21, 1861.
L. P. WALKER:
Lord John Russell's speech confirmed. Letters of marque recognized. Brigadier General A. H. Reeder named commander forces agent [against] harper's Ferry. Brigadier-General Mansfield's division, 25,000-invasion Virginia. Heavy firing this afternoon below Norfolk.
D. G . DUNCAN.
RICHMOND, May 21, 1861.
L. P. WALKER:
Flags half mast yesterday for the death of COLONEL Vosburgh, Seventy- first New York Regiment. Report renewal of attack on Sewell's Point incorrect. Letcher received dispatch, firing heard Norfolk. Now ascertained only testing guns.
D. G. DUNCAN.
TUESDAY, May 21, 1861.*
Present, John J. Allen, president; F. H. Smith, M. F. Maury, R. L. Montague, and T. S. Haymond.
The Governor submitted for advice the following subjects:
A report of John Crockford to Colonel P. St. George Cocke of the organization, under his (Colonel Cocke's) orders, of 238 men to guard the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, together with a letter from J. S . Barbour, Jr., president of that road, through whom Mr. Crockford received his instructions, asking that this force, men and officers, may be mustered into service; also other papers connected with the subject. Advised unanimously that it is inexpedient to muster into the service of the State the railway police organized by the president of the Orange and Alexandria Railroad under the orders of COLONEL Cocke. This police should be in the pay and under the control of the company, and when necessary may be strengthened by a detail of a military guard by the officers commanding along the line of the road.
A letter from Joseph R. Anderson relative to the attempts made by incendiaries to burn down the Tredegar Works, urging the importance to Virginia and to all the Confederate States that these works be preserved and kept in operation; suggesting that the Eighth Battalion of Virginia Volunteers, manned by the operatives, of which he is major, will, if mustered into service, willingly do the military duty of guarding the works, while holding themselves in readiness to aid in the defense of the city, and this without interference with their daily labors in manufacturing arms and implements. This letter comes indorsed by the recommendation of Colonel Magruder.
Advised unanimously that it is inexpedient to muster the mechanics into the service of the State. The detail of a guard is under the control of the general-in- chief.
* * * * *
The council unanimously advise that the colonel of ordnance be instructed to have the musket machinery of Harper's Ferry put up in the State armory forthwith, and to use the utmost dispatch in getting it into operation.
JOHN J. ALLEN.
FRANCIS H. SMITH.
M. F. MAURY.
RO. L. MONTAGUE.
T. S. HAYMOND.
*From proceedings of the Advisory Council of the State of Virginia