HEADQUARTERS CAMP McINTOSH, March 26, 1862-4 p.m.
General JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON,
GENERAL: At a point about 7 miles below this a large column of infantry was seen on the march this way at 2 p.m. Captain Gaither says he counted six regiments without seeing either end of the column' six regimental colors were counted. They were marching across the fields parallel to the railroad and in view of it. I immediately sent the First Virginia Cavalry (Jones') down to observe the enemy and report, and have not since heard. It is probable they will camp near Weaversville to-night.
Most respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. E. B. STUART,
HDQRS. FOURTH AND FIFTH BRIGS., DEPT OF NORFOLK,
Suffolk, Va., March 26, 1862.
Colonel S. S. ANDERSON,
A. A. G., Department of Norfolk, Norfolk, Va.:
COLONEL: I have examined the country surrounding Suffolk with a view to the defense of it and the railroads.
The battery and barrier referred to in Brigadier-General Randolph's memorandum are nearly completed, and the guns will be mounted as soon as a company shall be designated for it. Captain Poor informs me there is one (Captain Otey's) in Richmond without a battery that General Randolph thought could be obtained. It should be manned as soon as possible.
The material for the bridge over the Nansemond and its western branch, communication between the First, Second, and Fourth Brigades, is nearly ready, and that over the branch will be constructed in a few days.
The approaches from the south are so easy, and the country so open, that with the troops now here the enemy, if in force, could not be held in check for any length of time. I respectfully ask that the commanding general will urge upon the Department the vital importance of sending a considerable re-enforcement here at the earliest possible moment. All of the cavalry in this Fourth Brigade-about 40 effective men-are now used as vedettes and couriers between this place and Harvey's Neck, on the Sound. The distances to the several landings on the Chowan below Wyanoke-Colonel Armistead's camp and battery (I do not think the enemy would ascend the river that far)-are so short that it is of the utmost importance that intelligence of the first appearance of the advance of the enemy up the Sound should be communicated as rapidly as possible. To insure this and to scout the country thoroughly to provide against spies in the guise of fishmonger and traders (I find there are many now passing, but shall stop it at once) the cavalry force there is not sufficient.
The Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth North Carolina Militia (mere fragments), now on duty in the Fourth and Fifth Brigades, have not all been mustered into service. Will you designate some one to perform that duty?
I shall leave to-morrow to inspect the troops and defenses on the Roanoke and those in the Fourth Brigade south of this place.
I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,
C. L. STEVENSON,