HEADQUARTERS, CENTREVILLE, November 11, 1861.
Brigadier General W. H. C. WHITING,
Commanding Troops near Dumfries;
MY DEAR GENERAL: I have sent both your letters on the subject of a new battery * to the War Department with my concurrence. I look upon the case as hopeless, however; it is too late to make this addition preparation against any combined operation against Evansport. Remember that it took our War Department month to make the mere removal of guns and little ammunition to Evansport. If the attack you anticipate is to be made, it must be within that time. Is your position nea enough to Evansport? Will not the distance, 3 or 4 miles, render it difficult for you to defend both with you force. Would not the masked battery used on a former occasion-I mean the guns and gunners-make a useful diversion, should the proposed battery not be ready?
Captain Stevens has been very sick and I fear will not be strong enough for service for some days yet. He is our only engineer, you know. Before leaving us I shall wish him to plan such additions as may enabled fort Pickens to be independent of the army for a few days.
I am embarrassed on the subject of winter quarters. I made arrangements a month ago for the beginning of preparations, but was disappointed by the supposed contractor, who gave up the undertaking
*Not found. .