ceived, but should be direct acting. With two engines far more speed, safety, and certainty would be insured.
I am using my utmost efforts to procure a supply of pig or scrap iron for casting the machinery proposed to be used in operating the torpedo.
I have sent an agent to collect all that can be procured on the rice plantations on Cooper River, and have addressed several gentlemen on the subject in the interior of the State.
I have received such supplies of bar-iron from the flag-officer of the station as were necessary to supply the immediate requirements of the ship-carpenter.
I have taken all the necessary steps to procure an early supply of such timber as may be required to meet further demands. Upon making a careful examination of the vessel and calculating its draught it is evident that it may be advantageously used against such of the enemy's vessels as now frequent the inlets and water-courses reached by inland navigation.
If the design proves practicable there is no estimating the advantage which may be derived from it in this field of operations, which cannot be reached by the gunboats now built or in course of construction.
I would earnestly and respectfully suggest, however, that a single pivot gun be placed in a suitable shield amidships to enable the vessel to make a defense in case any accident should occur to the engine or other machinery. This necessity would become more imperative should the ram go into action single-handed; it would further insure to the service a useful vessel should, from some unforeseen cause, the torpedo be found ineffectual.
Such a modification I am further assured would bring to the accomplishment of the design the sympathy of those whose co-operation would be invaluable.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
FRANCIS D. LEE,
HDQRS. PROV. FORCES, DIST. EAST AND MIDDLE FLA., Tallahassee, November 24, 1862.
Brigadier General THOMAS JORDAN,
Chief of Staff and Assistant Adjutant-General:
SIR: His Excellency Governor Milton has informed me that he withdraws any objection he may have had to the obstructions of the Apalachicola River, having ascertained that the work was to be done under direction of a Government engineer. Captain Moreno, I understand, is now progressing with the work.
I have the honor to be, general, with great respect, your obedient servant,
RICHMOND, November 24, 1862.
Honorable JOHN MILTON,
Governor of Florida, Tallahassee:
Your dispatch to the President referred to this office for answer. General H. Cobb has been assigned to command of Department of