and four batteries to aid them in Tennessee, for nothing of any description has been sent here except some saltpeter.
6th. I am hunting all over the Confederacy to procure saltpeter to rework the powder lately arrived from Cuba. They are sending it from Memphis to Augusta. I have, however, sent an agent to Texas to get some that I heard was at Houston, and there is a lot of 6,000 pounds en route here from Georgia. Until I get some the powder must remain in statu quo.
7th. Permit me again to urge upon you the necessity of sending here an officer of ordnance to attend to the numerous requisitions constantly made upon this department from all quarters. Much delay and difficulty have arisen from the want of such a person here. This duty has been performed by Major Smith, in addition to this other duties; but by this arrangement injustice is done both to him and to the public service.
8th. I am somewhat fearful that a little too much latitude has been given to the steamboat captains and pilots in charge of the river expedition. Id the current of opinion here should set against them they will be unable to get crews, and I would recommend a responsible head to the expedition when it is ready, to move, otherwise there will be discussion, confusion, and consequent inaction.
9th. The Calhoun runs up the river below the forts, and we have nothing to keep her back. I hope the Secretary of the Navy will keep at least one vessel here to prevent the enemy from making reconnaissances under our very guns.
10th. I allow no arms or powder arriving to escape me, but have no need to impress, as I will not give a permit to go out until I have the promise of the refusal of the cargo. The arrangement works smoothly.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT ALABAMA AND WEST FLORIDA,
Pensacola, March 7, 1862.
First Florida Regiment, Commanding Deer Point.:
COLONEL: The brigadier-general commanding directs me to say that the steamer Tom Murray has been chartered and will be placed under your orders at Deer Point. You will hold your battalion in readiness to move at a moment's warning. Send your tents and heavy baggage, in charge of a commissioned officer and 3 men, to Brewton, there to await further orders from you. You will keep constantly on the alert, and if attacked by an overpowering force, or if you should discover two or more buildings in the navy-yard to be on fire, you will take your men on the steamer, first firing the buildings, if possible, and proceed immediately to Bagdad and Milton, and there burn every foot of lumber, the saw-mills, and boats, including the steamer Tom Murray, and everything that can be of any service to the enemy. If the saws and machinery can be moved to the interior, it may be done; otherwise the saws and machinery must be broken and destroyed. Having accomplished the work assigned you, you will march your command to Brewton and there await further orders. You will keep your battalion supplied