War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0757 Chapter XVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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I shall have to spare him a part of my regular officers from Pensacola, as his need is great and pressing. I shall return to pensacola to-morrow.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

BRAXTON BRAGG,

Major-General, Commanding.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT ALABAMA AND WEST FLORIDA, Near Pensacola, Fla., October 28, 1861.

SIR: I arrived here yesterday from Mobile, and find no change to report. The enemy is in a consent state of excitement on Santa Rosa, and has frequent alarms. He has moved artillery up the island to our landing place of the late expedition. General Withers' command needs much to put it in an efficient condition. He has about 4,200 troops-which should be increased to 6,000-mostly raw, and inefficiently organized, armed, and equipped, and very destitute of military instructors. The positions of Forts Morgan and gaines and Grant's pass are occupied by his best troops, about 2,000, and in close proximity. The two senior officers commanding at the forts are very competent, but sadly addicted to drinking, and therefore unsafe for those exposed positions. The General cannot remain there and discharge his other duties, though he will visit them frequently. The remainder of his command, except two detached companies, will be concentrated in a suitable camp on the west of Mobile Bay, and some 15 or 20 miles below the city, where they will be away from dissipation, can be cheaply supplied, and will be available for any attack. These two positions require commanders of military knowledge and experiences and capacity for command.

First Lieutenant J. E. Slaughter, acting inspector-general; Captain W. R. Boggs, Engineers; Lieutenant Colonel J. B. Villepigue, Georgia and Mississippi regiment, and Major L. W. O'Bannon, quartermaster, furnish material from which the President might select two brigadier for those important positions, I can very well fill the vacancies on my staff from well-instructed volunteers, except in the Engineer. Should colonel Villepigue receive one of the appointments, one of the others might fill his vacancy. I shall order First Lieutenant G. W. Holt, C. S. Army, to report to General Withers, at Mobile, as depot quartermaster there, and discharge the agent now on that duty. Lieutenant Holt deserves and should receive promotion. First Lieutenant Hallonquist, C. S. artillery, will also be ordered to report to General Withers, as chief of artillery. As that command has several companies of light artillery, I suggest his appointment as major of them. Promotion could not fall on a more gallant or efficient officer. If it could be arranged so that Brigadier-General Ruggles could be my second in command here, or could assume my local duties, my services could be much more efficient, and from the hold he has on the confidence and affection of the troops here I know the consequences feared by the Department in my removal would not ensue. I should still be much with them.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

BRAXTON BRAGG,

Major-General, Commanding.