off this harbor, and I have therefore to ask your assistance with the steamer Stono to bear the flag.
I should also be pleased if you could permit the communication I have to send be carried by a naval officer, Lieutenant Bier, for example, who might be able to observe the position and somewhat of the character of the flag-ship of the squadron, to wit, the Inrosides.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
G. T. BEAUREGARD,
SAVANNAH, March 19, 1863.
DEAR GENERAL: I inclose a private note from General Wayne for your consideration. The suggestions you may deem valuable.
It is very desirable not to run counter to any of the crotchets of our disputatious Governor, who perhaps finds that a second negro impressment might not improve his chance for re-election to the gubernatorial chair, and therefore seeks to evade the question by delays and points of etiquette between military commanders and himself and between military commanders themselves. I am of course not ambitious of getting to loggerheads with His Excellency, and am more than willing to avoid any direct communication with him. Our laborers are fast leaving us, and if the details are not renewed anything like a complete system of defenses for Savannah must go by the board.
The Abolition programme for the day is not being carried out, I suppose.
H. W. MERCER.
MILLEDGVILLE, March 16, 1863.
MY DEAR HUGH: As men not military do not understand the relations and connection of responsibilities of military grades and rank, some arrangement with General Beauregard by which you responsibility to him and at the same time your position as the military commander in the State of Georgia may be understood by the Governor, and a conflict of authority engendered in him mind prejudicial to the public interests be prevented.
In the militia matter you may have noticed that he sought to pass by you and ignore your action under the direct call upon him of General Beauregard; and in the papers you sent up on the matter of negroes impressed for work on the fortifications around Savannah you see the same disposition manifested in his reply, "that he would not order a new impressment unless officially notified by General Beauregard that such a course was necessary for the safety of Savannah."
I am aware that you do not stand upon points, but I can see in the ignorance of the Governor in military affairs, contentious as he constitutionally is, the germs of difficulties with you all and with the Confederate Government.
It would be well if all calls upon the State for details of any kind of force were made through you; or, if circumstances require a direct communication with the Governor, that in the call reference should be made to you as the one to be answered and to attend to it.
Love to all at home.
H. C. W.