War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0426 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

Search Civil War Official Records

ligence or inefficiency at this place. I hope Colonel Clarke's (Twenty-fourth Regiment North Carolina Volunteers) regiment, now stationed at Petersburg, will have sufficiently recruited to be serviceable.

I have now to rely on an unarmed and undrilled militia for protection, and a draft which has been made for one-third of them has I regret to say, developed or occasioned much dissatisfaction.

I tender these suggestions to you most respectfully. Should they fail in enlisting your favor, I shall regret to believe that there are other places besides our coast which claim your protection from overwhelming forces and need more help than we do, for I feel assured of your assistance if it could be spared.

Very respectfully, yours,


[FEBRUARY 2, 1862.-The Confederate authorities make requisition upon the State of North Carolina for twenty-six regiments "for the war." For requisition and the Governor's' response, of February 11, see Series IV, Vol. I.]


Richmond, Va., February 3, 1862.

Gov. HENRY T. CLARK, Raleigh, N. C.:

SIR: I have received your favor of the 1st instant, and assure you that you but to me justice in confiding in my earnest desire to do everything in my power to aid in the defense of your coast. Most fortunately the enemy's fleet has been crippled much more seriously than you seem to be aware, and we are thus allowed some time for preparation beyond what we could otherwise have hoped.

In regard to re-enforcements, my thoughts had already been turned on the Peninsula, but there is a serious difficulty in the way there of which you are not aware. Four or five of the regiments on the Peninsula are twelve-months' men, whose term of service is on the eve of expiring; others will expire a little later, and nothing can induce the men to re-enlist unless they have a furlough. But for this I could withdraw a few regiments from the Peninsula. We are reaping the bitter fruits of the blind folly of short enlistments, against which I have struggled with unremitting energy from the day the first shot was fired at Fort Sumter.

However all is not as bad as you supposed. I have just ordered two batteries of artillery to your aid, and have instructed General Huger to see in person to the defense at Roanoke. He will also send 2,000 or 3,000 men, perhaps more, that can be spared from Norfolk. I have ordered a detail of men to give full efficiency to the gunboats under Commodore Lynch and to the floating battery. The regiment at Petersburg ought now to be able to move, and I will order it at once too report to General Gatlin.

I am sure I could organize the defenses of our country, wherever attacked, if I only had munitions; but, in addition to the heavy superiority in numbers of the enemy, we have to struggle on with a very inadequate supply of materials of war. Your people may suffer somewhat at points where the enemy's superior water forces enable them to ravage the country within reach of their guns, but I do not fear, and