Jamestown, March 28, 1862.
Colonel B. S. EWELL:
DEAR SIR: I have the honor to report that we have of heavy artillery, including all the new recruits, about 400 men, and only have 80 percussion muskets besides what the militia have; therefore, we want 120 to arm one-half of the heavy artillery. We only have 4,000 cartridges for muskets. I shall be on the alert for the enemy. The flying artillery company under Captain Jordan are 100 strong and the militia about 20 men only, so that we have 520 men on the island in all. Captain Jordan lacks 30 horses for his light artillery.
Most respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel, Commanding Post.
HDQRS. ARMY OF THE PENINSULA,
No. 168. Lee's Farm, near Lee's Mill, March 28, 1862.
The enemy is at length advancing. We shall fight him on the line of Warwick River. Already he is about to occupy Young's Mill. The commanding general is aware that every man will do his duty. He therefore gives these few general directions:
1st. Hereafter, until further orders, three days' cooked provisions will be kept in the haversacks and hard bread be drawn instead of flour.
2nd. The arms of all descriptions will be put in the most perfect order and kept so. A full supply of ammunition, dry and in perfect order, will be kept always on hand by every corps. Commanding officers will deposit near the fighting ground of their regiment any surplus supply of ammunition which they may have, so as to get at it conveniently. Additional supplies are at Williamsburg and Yorktown. In sending for these, commanding officers will be careful in every case to state the caliber and king of arm for which it is required, and ordnance officers will issue without waiting for the approval of the commanding general.
Each man will take care to aim well, fire low, and bring his man. When fighting in the woods regimental and company officers will see that the men are extended at considerable intervals and so kept, taking advantage of natural obstacles. The disposition of men is generally to huddle together, in consequence of which it is difficult to form a regular line of skirmishers and the line is not sufficiently extended.
3rd. Commanders of all infantry corps serving with artillery must always designate a sufficient number of the infantry to protect the artillery, and in all marches, whether to the front or rear, these commanders will place artillery in the intervals between the infantry, so that the infantry can fully protect them.
In marching on a narrow road there will always be one or two pieces of artillery in front, preceded by infantry, and one or two pieces in rear, followed by infantry. Cavalry, when in column on the road, must be in front and rear, the larger portion in front. If attacked in retreat, the cavalry which brings up the rear and the infantry which protects the artillery must move out of the road a little to allow the artillery to fire at the enemy and stop the pursuit. Should the enemy's cavalry charge upon the rear of a column with a view of capturing the artillery, the infantry must form a square or a circle to protect it, coming to a charge bayonet, and firing when necessary.