He feels confident everything has been done by you to carry out his instructions. He is aware of the many difficulties under which you are laboring. With the utmost confidence in your ability, zeal, and industry, the general knows nothing will be neglected by you which can possibly be performed.
He directs that by all means the large shell guns, ammunition, and implements, with the most important stores, be collected and saved. Abandon nothing that can possibly be secured.
Also that you relieve Colonel Villepigue, Captain Gibbs, and Lieutenant W. F. Johnson, C. S. Marine Corps, as soon as you can spare them, and direct them to report here. The services of Colonel Villepigue are much needed. Would it not be well to relieve him immediately, and assign Colonel W. L. Powell, at present commanding Second Brigade, to the temporary command of the Army of Mobile?
You can retain such forces as you deem necessary to carry out instructions.
The general has the pleasure of knowing that you have been nominated for a major-general. As soon as the appointment is received you will be assigned to the command of the one of the divisions of this army.
We shall endeavor to keep you advised of important events transpiring in this quarter.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. G. GARNER,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF PENSACOLA,
Pensacola, Fla., March 12, 1862.
Captain F. J. MYERS,
First Florida Regiment, Commanding at Deer Point:
CAPTAIN: You must not suppose that you and the companies with you are left at Deer Point merely to let the enemy see that the Point is still held, and to retreat on the first demonstration of an attack. A much smaller guard would better serve that purpose.
I am convinced that the enemy on Santa Rosa is by no means so strong as has been supposed, and I do not believe they are prepared to make a serious attack on us. It is not improbable that they have received reports of our movements here which will induce them to reconnoiter and perhaps feel you, without any intention of attacking seriously, but only to ascertain the condition of things. If they are met boldly and driven off they will let you alone, at least until they are strongly re-enforced. You must not give up your position unless attacked by overpowering numbers. Your position is such that the enemy can only approach you by boats or by crossing high up and coming down the beach, which is so narrow that a few men judiciously placed, sheltered by sand hills and trees, can drive off five times their numbers if they will keep cool and fight bravely. Extend your sentinels 3 or 4 miles up the beach, as far as Live Oak Plantation if practicable, so as to give you timely warning of the approach of the enemy if he present himself, and be sure they are they are too many for you before you retreat.
The Floridians at Deer Point have an important duty to perform, and I expect them so to perform is as to reflect credit upon themselves and their State. You will be withdrawn and your places supplied in a day or two.
Very respectfully, &c.,