Besides the present garrison of Fort Monroe, consisting of seven companies of regular artillery, portions of two massachusetts regiments of volunteers, and a regiment of Vermont volunteers, nine additional regiments of volunteers from New York may soon be expected there. Only a small portion, if any, of these can be conveniently quartered or encamped in the fort, the greater part if not the whole area of which will be necessary for exercise on the ground. The nine additional regiments must therefore be encamped in the best positions outside of and as near the fort as may be. For this purpose it is hoped that a pine forest north of the fort and near the bay may be found to furnish the necessary ground and shade for some three thousand men, though somewhat distant from drinking and cooking water; this, as well as fuel, it may be necessary to bring to the camp on wheels. The Quartermaster's Department has been instructed to furnish the necessary, vehicles, casks, and draught animals.
The war garrison of Fort Monroe against a formidable army provided with an adequate siege-train is about 2,500 men. You will soon have there, inside and out, near three times that number. Assuming 1,500 men as a garrison adequate to resist any probable attack in the next six months for at least many days or weeks, you will consider the remainder of the force under your command disposable for aggressive purposes, and employ it accordingly.
In respect to more distant operations you may expect specific instructions at a later date. In the mean time I will direct your attention to the following objects:
1. Not to let the enemy erect batteries to annoy Fort Monroe;
2. To capture any batteries the enemy may have within a half-day's march of you, or which may be reached by land;
3. The same in respect to the enemy's batteries at or above Craney Island, though requiring water craft; and
4. To menace and to recapture the navy-yard at Gosport in order to complete its destruction, with its contents, except what it may be practicable to bring away in safety.
It is expected that you put yourself into free communication with the commander of the United States naval forces in Hampton Roads, and invite his cordial co-operation with you in all operations in whole or in part by water, and no doubt he will have received corresponding instructions from the Navy Department.
Boldness in execution is nearly always necessary, but in planning and fitting out expeditions or detachments great circumspection is a virtue. In important cases, where time clearly permits, be sure to submit your plans and ask instructions from higher authority. Communicate with me often and fully on all matters important to the service.
I remain, with great respect, yours,
BALTIMORE, May 18, 1861.
Honorable SIMON CAMERON, Secretary of War:
SIR: I have just received an order from General Scott transferring the command of the Department of Annapolis to General Cadwalader and ordering me to Fort Monroe. What does this mean? Is it a censure upon my action? Is it because I have caused Winans to be arrested? Is it because of my proving successful in bringing Baltimore to subjection and quiet?
41 R R-VOL II