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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 6, Part 1 (Fort Pulaski - New Orleans)
Page 350 COASTS OF S. C., GA., AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLA. Chapter XV.

will naturally occupy the earnest consideration of that enlightened body. I do not think any suggestion from me will be necessary or even useful, as I feel certain that every measure requisite for the protection of the State or her citizens will be adopted. In compliance, therefore, with your kind request to made to you any suggestions that may seem to me required by present circumstances, I think it only necessary to repeat more emphatically than perhaps I have been able to do in person the urgent necessity of bringing out the military strength of the state and putting it under the best and most permanent organization. The troops, in my opinion, should be organized for the war. We cannot stop short of its termination, be it long or short. No one, I presume, would desire to do so; no one. Therefore, will continue in service longer than the war requires. The disbanding and reorganization of troops in time of peace is attended with loss and expense; what must it be in time of war, when it may occur at periods that might otherwise prove highly disastrous?

I temple to think of the consequences that may befall us next spring when all our twelve-months' men may claim their discharge. At the opening of the campaign, when our enemies will take the field fresh and vigorous, after a year's preparation and winter's repose, we shall be in all the anxiety, excitement, and organization of new armies. In what different condition will be the opposing armies on the plains of Manassas at the resumption of active operations! I have through that General McClellan was waiting to seize the advantage he would then possess.

I beg you will put to this lamentable state of affairs. The Confederate States have now but one great object in view, the successful issue of their was of independence. Everything worth their possessing depends on that. Everything should yield to its accomplishment.

There is another point to which I would invite you attention. The best troops are ineffectual without good officers. Our volunteers, more than any other, require offices whom they can respect and trust. The best men for that position should be selected, and it is important to consider how it can be effected. It would be safe to trust men ot he intelligence and character of our volunteers to elect their officers, could they at the time of election realize their dependent condition in the day of battle. But this they cannot do, and I have known them in the hour of danger repudiate and disown officers of their choice and beg for responsibility which they do not feel and cannot properly exercise? The colonel of a regiment has an important trust, and is a guardian of the honor of the State as well as of the lives of the citizens. I think it better for the field offices of the regiment in the State service to be appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of its legislature, and those in the confederate service by the President and Congress. It would also, in my opinion, add to the simplicity and economy of our military establishment to conform to the some principle of organization. That adopted by Congress is formed by the united wisdom of the State representatives, and is followed in its army. It would be well for the State governments to adopt it, as far as circumstances will permit. Special corps and separate commands are frequent causes of embarrassment.

It is useless for me to suggest that measures be taken to develop the military resources of the State; to advance the fabrication of powder, arms, and all the necessaries of war, as well as the production of bountiful supplies for her troops and citizens. The strictest economy should


Page 350 COASTS OF S. C., GA., AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLA. Chapter XV.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 6, Part 1 (Fort Pulaski - New Orleans)
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