Relief of some kind is necessary, but how it is to reach us I can hardly suggest, as no human power of animal power could carry empty wagons over this road with such teams as we have.
Yours, most truly,
APRIL 8, 1862-2 p. m.
MY DEAR GENERAL: I have just arrived with my staff, all exhausted. We have labored all day trying to bring forward troops, and especially to save artillery. The roads are horrible, and unless we can mend them it is impossible for the artillery to get in. The teams are exhausted by incessant labor and no forage. I have already ordered some cavalry of my command, say 200, to move out and report to Major Hallonquist, my chief of artillery, who will use their horses to bring forward our guns, among them several of the enemy's.
I left General Hardee behind in command, with working parties on the roads; but the men are exhausted, dispirited, and work with no zeal.
Finding a battalion of troops in my corps who have not been out, I ordered them to procure tools and proceed to work the roads. This is the first essential now. No teams can bring wagons or artillery over the roads. I left my only engineer, Captain Lockett, with General Hardee; five, at least, could be well occupied. Sufficient provisions have gone forward for the present, but we need sustenance and fresh medical officers at Mickey's for the wounded, transportation to bring them away, labor in quantity, and energy on the roads, fresh teams for the artillery, forage for the exhausted ones, and, as soon as any troops are refreshed, a rear guard to relieve Breckinridge.
On the Monterey road I am not informed. Myself and my staff are utterly exhausted and our horses barely able to walk. The enemy had not followed when I last heard.
Yours, most truly,
I would see you, but am utterly unable.
MICKEY'S, April 8, 1862-2.30 p. m.
The enemy reported to be advancing and to be more than a mile this side the junction of Monterey and Pittsburg with Bark road. They are said to be about 500 cavalry and several regiments of infantry. We can hear some firing in that direction between them and a part of our cavalry. It may be only a strong reconnoitering party. We have gathered things up pretty well to this point. I am getting forward stragglers, sick, and wounded as fast as possible.
Six pieces of artillery, after being placed in position, by some strange fatality left last night, leaving me four pieces, and two regiments of my infantry also passed through here, through, I suppose, a misapprehension of my orders, leaving me about 1,200 infantry. I have rations for two days, but no forage.