War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0464 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

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evening, represent all quiet. The enemy had not returned there, and the reported landing of the day previous at Canal Bridge, Currituck Country, turned out to be only a small party, who soon retired.

General Blanchard sent the wounded prisoners up here, and I forwarded them (19) yesterday to General Wool at Fort Monroe. The surgeon I released unconditionally.

You are aware that no forces replaced Colston's brigade, and our batteries and the country along James River (Burrell's Bay) are underdefended.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major-General, &c.


General R. E. LEE,


GENERAL: My report from South Mills up to 3 p. m. yesterday states all is quiet. The enemy had not returned.

I conversed yesterday with one of the North Carolina Mills (Stephen Williams), who was captured by the enemy near Elizabeth City some two weeks since (with 72 others), and has been on Roanoke Island. He was forced to act as guide to the expedition, and landed them at 12 at night 2 miles below Elizabeth City. In the dark and during the confusion of landing he made his escape. He states he was sin the cabin with General Reno and Colonel Hawkins and other officers, and they spoke openly of their intention of seizing the south end and destroying the lock of the canal so we could not pass iron-clad boats into the sound, and that they would fortify and hold the position and re-enforce it to any amount and threaten Norfolk in the rear, while McClellan attacked it in front. Several of the regiments sent on this expedition came from New Berne.

If the attack is renewed troops will no doubt be sent from there. Is General Holmes strong enough to threaten them from Goldsborough? If he can, it would be well to occupy them.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS, Richmond, Va., April 26, 1862.

Major General T. H. HOLMES,

Goldsborough, N. C.:

GENERAL: The arrival of arms in Wilmington enables me to distribute some to the troops organized in North Carolina. If I am correctly informed as to the numbers received I will assign to you 2,400, which, with the arms of the country, which I hope have been collected by the Governor for these troops, will enable you to arm six regiments. We can only now, in the present scarcity of arms, distribute 400 to a regiment, which will enable you to arm the flank companies with the improved arms and the center companies with the State arms.

I distributing the arms you are authorized to issue to the flank companies of the old regiments those improved arms, and take from them the arms they now have and issue them to companies of the new regiments.