LEWISBURG, September 19, 1861.
Mr. Mathews, the author of the foreign letter, has been and still is our county representative in the legislature-a gentleman of truth and intelligence, whose statements are entitled to the fullest credit. In addition to what he states we have understood from other sources that a great want of harmony exists between Generals Floyd and Wise. The remedy for this dangerous evil we submit to your cooler and better judgment.
Very truly and respectfully,
LEWISBURG, VA., September 19, 1861.
To the PRESIDENT OF THE CONFEDERATE STATES:
Your Excellency will excuse, I hope, the liberty which I have taken of addressing you a few lines relative tot he apprehensions which cause much anxiety in our community and the circumstances which have given rise to them. At the time of the battle at Camp Gauley General Wise was at he Hawk's Nest, a short distance this side of Gauley Bridge. Cox's encampment and our militia, 1,500 or 1,800 strong, were at Cotton Hill, opposite to Cox, on the western side of New River,, near its confluence with Gauley. In the battle of Camp Gauley our loss was some 5 or 6 wounded, and from all we can learn the slaughter of the enemy was terrific. I have conversed with individuals who were in the engagement, but they could only infer from the exposed condition of the enemy was terrific. I have conversed with individuals who were in the engagement, but they could only infer form the exposed condition of the enemy and the quantity of grape, &c., thrown amongst them their probable loss. They suppose it to have been great, but reports from persons in the neighborhood, who got their information form the enemy, represent his loss to have been tremendous. The dead and wounded,a they say, amounted ot thousands. After the battle General Floyd crossed Gauley and retreated to a point on the James river and Kanawha Turnpike road, about 12 miles south of where the battle was fought-Dogwood Gap. There he was joined by General Wise. Both subsequently retreated to Big Sewell, about 30 miles west of this place, where General Wise yet remains, but General Floyd retreated on Monday night last ot Meadow Bluff, 16 miles west of Lewisburg. On yesterday we learned that he was again moving west, but I am unable to say whether by the turnpike or the Wilderness road leading to Summersville, and crossing Gauley at Hughes' ferry. From the time the battle of Gauley Camp occurred we have been anxiously expecting that General Lee would follow Rosecrans to Summersville, and many reports have reached us that he was doing so, but I fear our hopes in this respect are unfounded. We have no positive knowledge that the enemy in force has yet crossed Gauley, but it is said that his scouts have done so, and I apprehend that he will soon learn that Floyd's and Wise's forces combined are much less than his own. Heretofore I believe he has overestimated our strength. We do not know Rosecrans' strength in the battle of Camp Gauley, or rather the exact number of men with which he marched into Nicholas. It is variously reported at form 7,000 to 12,000. I am disposed to believe the smaller number nearly correct. But a union with Cox will give him probably 10,000 men, unless his.
55 R R-VOL V