War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0337 Chapter XXVi. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.- UNION.

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HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, April 22, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to inclose you an editorial from the Savannah Republican of yesterday. From this you will see that they are fully aware of your situation. From the best information I can obtain the enemy have 30,000 at Savannah, 25,000 at Charleston, and 10,000 at Augusta 0 65,000 - which they can concentrate at any one point in twenty-four hours. Why they do not attack us, knowing as they do our situation, is a mystery to me. We have less than 16,000 men now ready for the field scattered along the coast for 200 miles. Hoping daily for re-enforcements, and hoping the enemy might be ignorant of our situation, I have been reluctant to disturb the present disposition of the troops, knowing the bad effect of abandoning places once occupied. I know you are anxious to send me re-enforcements as soon as it is in your power, but if you are unable to do so I shall deem it my imperative duty to somewhat concentrate my command, holding only on this coast Saint Augustine, Fernandina, Pulaski, and Hilton Head. With proper re-enforcements I confidently hope to report to you in a few weeks the fall of Sumter, Charleston, and Savannah.

I inclose a note this moment received from Beaufort. The enemy have also appeared in force on Pickney Island.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

D. HUNTER,

Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosures.]

ALL QUIET.- We received not a word of news yesterday by telegraphed from any quarter up to dark. A profound quiet seems to have rested over our armies at all points for the last few days. It may be and probably is the awful stillness that precedes the storm. The relative positions of the two combatants, both in the West and East, are such that a collision is obliged to result in the course of a very few days. Both parties, too, are ready for a grand strife that is to determine the fate of the great American revolution. Mighty consequences hang upon the movements in the Peninsula and in West Tennessee, and we hope the Southern troops are fully alive to the responsibility resting upon them.

On the banks of the Savannah all seems quiet too. The enemy, few in numbers, are still lying in our over river, and so far as seen no re-enforcements have reached them. They have not a force equal to an attack on the city, and its augmentation would seem inconsistent with the pressing demands from other points at the present time. McClellan will need every man he draw into the field for his operations in the Peninsula, and the Federal exigencies out West are equally pressing for all the troops at their command. Meanwhile we are not idle. The military authorities here are using all means in their power to strengthen our defenses and make them impregnable, Come in what numbers he may, the enemy will have his hands full in his march upon Savannah.

A gunboats came up Freeborn's Cut yesterday forenoon to within about 2 miles of our battery at carson's Bluff, but no gun was fired on either side. A Federal propeller also came up the river yesterday and fired a shot in the direction of Mackay's Point, but it fell far short of the mark.

22 R R - VOL XIV