War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0698 COASTS OF S. C.,GA.,AND MID. AND EAST FLA. Chapter XXVI.

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attack our river defenses in the rear, and they would, as at present organized, fall. The removal of the obstructions in the river and the passage of their boats up the river would then be simply a matter of time.

To meet these or any other movements of the enemy in Middle Florida we have, as I am informed, five companies of infantry about 350 strong; one battery of six pieces about 150 strong; one cavalry company of 50 men, and one company of Partisan Rangers. The utter inadequacy of this force is too apparent for comment.

I address you this letter before reaching my post because I deem it important that you should be advised at once of the condition of affairs ion this portion of your department. I leave here in the morning for Quincy and Tallahassee, and as soon as I obtain more full and accurate information will submit to you a formal report on the subject. In the mean time I shall be most happy to receive such suggestions and instructions as you may make and such additional force as can be furnished.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

HOWELL COBB,

Brigadier-General.

SAVANNAH, December 4, 1862.

General S. COOPER:

The Navy here is in urgent need of seamen. I have a number of volunteers from the Army ready and anxious to enter that service. Can I not transfer them at once without further formality? Please reply.

H. W. MERCER,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

[Indorsement.]

You may, if you approve the transfer, order them to be made under General Orders, Numbers 77 and Numbers 89.

S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General.

GENERAL ORDERS,

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF S. C. AND GA., Numbers 115.

Charleston, S. C., December 4, 1862.

I. All light batteries in this department will hereafter consist of four pieces, each drawn by six horses (caissons the same), of calibers os follows: Either four 6-pounder smooth-bore or two 6-pounder smooth-bore, and two 12-pounder or two 24-pounder howitzers; or four 12-pounder Napoleon guns or four rifled guns of same caliber, if practicable; or two 12 (or two 24-pounder) howitzers and two rifled guns; and no battery will have guns of more than two different calibers.

II. Rifled guns are intended for long ranges, and in action should be stationed on commanding positions beyond the range of grape and rifled small-arms, to be used principally on the enemies reserves and to select his batteries. It is enjoined on officers to require and impress upon their men the advantage of firing slowly and with deliberation.

III. Artillery should be employed against the enemy's advancing columns of infantry and cavalry, and after routing them should then