Orleans. On one of them he found the captain and 5 men and on the other the captain and 3 men, all of whom stated respectively that they had taken the oath as required by General Butler, U. S. Army, commanding at New Orleans, and that their business here want to procure wood ad take it to new Orleans. The schooners and crews will be detained at this place by me until orders relative thereto from you.
Your obedient servant,
A. R. WITT,
Colonel, Commanding Post.
HEADQUARTERS SUB-MILITARY DISTRICT OF HOUSTON,
Houston, Tex., October 19, 1862.
Captain SAMUEL BOYER DAVIS,
Assistant Adjutant-General, &c., San Antonio, Tex.:
CAPTAIN: I return from Fort Hebert, whither I went with General Lubbock the day before yesterday. I found works of defense progressing finely; the troops in good spirits and working hard. Colonel Cook is erecting a battery at the brick-yard in rear of Judge Jones' residence, where he intends to mount the 10-inch columbiad removed from Houston, to cross fires with Nelson's battery. Three vessels only are now in Galveston Bay, viz, two steamers and one mortar-boat.
The delay of the enemy in attacking us perplexes me. Will he keep us in check with that small force, or does he await land forces, as stated by Commander Renshaw to the people of Galveston? In the first alternative, most of my available force will be kept idle at the point while he may make some attempts another parts of the coast. In the second, the may, with his lunches, land a superior force on my rear, at Dallas Point, Clear Creek, or Dickenson's Bayou; intercept my railroad communication, thus cutting me off from subsistence stores, water, and fuel; compel me to fall back on Simmes' Bayou, abandoning all the artillery and exposed to a flanking fire. Such a retreat could not be done through that marshy country without losing a considerable portion of my force. The again could not the enemy, landing at Dickenson's Bayou, steal a march over me and reach Houston before assistance could be sent? I have no troops to spare. The protection of the Sabine and Nechez (with inadequate artillery), that of the lath of the Brazos at Velasco and Virginia Point, gives employment to all the infantry in this sub-district. My twenty-two companies of cavalry, except four, are scattered over an extent of coast of over 200 miles, for police purposes rather than military operations, and the battery of light artillery is scarcely of any avail in this section of country, intersected by deep steams, and most of which is marshy in the rainy season. Is Virginia Point a strategic position with keeping after Galveston has been evacuated, or should it be abandoned and our artillery be removed if the enemy give time, to protect obstructions at the mouth of our rivers?
I respectfully submit these considerations to the general commanding, with observation that until further orders I shall blindly stand at Virginia Point and try to cut my way through if the enemy turns my position; but, I repeat it, in the case of a retreat through the enemy's lines I must lose all the artillery and ammunition at Fort Hebert.
The Galveston News gives in its number of the 18th instant an account of a conflict of some of our troops with the citizens of Galveston, resulting in the death of one man (not Mr. Westrlage, as stated). I