hands. I trust, however, as a law has been passed authorizing impressment of negro labor, that as soon as Christmas is over we shall have a considerable force, without the necessity of making use of the law.
It seems that there will be a good deal of difficulty in arming and equipping the companies of light artillery in Major White's battalion and of Captain Boyce. Major White is still garrisoning the batteries at Wappoo, which I shall endeavor to increase in armament with the two 12-pounder ship guns from the Theodora. The 24-pounder I think of placing on Castle Pinckney. The one-gun battery on the right of the James Island line is constructed, and will be armed and garrisoned with one of White's companies speedily; but for guns, caissons, or harness for them I am utterly at a loss.
From such observation as has been lately made the sunken fleet is gradually disappearing.
I have omitted to mention that the Marion Artillery will be ready for the field, with four pieces, within a day or so; they are State troops.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. S. RIPLEY,
HEADQUARTERS THIRD MILITARY DISTRICT,
Adams Run, December 26, 1861.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report, for your information, that my express has just arrived, with the intelligence that the enemy, with a force of ten vessels, are advancing up Wadmalaw Sound, firing, with a advance, both upon Edisto Ferry and White Point. These points, it is understood; are being occupied by the enemy. Please send me re-enforcements; my force is only 250 strong.
N. G. EVANS,
Brigadier-General, C. S. A.
MARIANNA, December 26, 1861.
Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN,
Secretary of War:
SIR: Inclosed is a report from General Floyd, who is in command at Apalachicola; also a copy of a report made by Lieutenant B. Mickle, who, at my request, was sent by General Bragg upon an application for a skillful engineer and artillerist.
Much has been accomplished by the forces in service by State authority since Colonel Hopkins was ordered from and left there, who is in Confederate service; and immense expense has been saved, which was being to say the least, uselessly incurred.
If the Confederate Government will become definitely responsible for the defense of Apalachicola by State authority, the expense will be less and its defense more certain. The forces in State service at Apalachicola have been well equipped and well drilled, and are generally substantial men and men of intelligence, and this body of gallant men cannot enter the Confederate service without breaking up the most efficient organization of State troops unless they will be received in their present organizations. It is extremely difficult to associate forces