can drive the enemy to their gunboats, protect our salt manufactories on the coast, which are of urgent and great importance, and give security and confidence to the whole population engaged in their peaceful pursuits; and these results cannot be accomplished in any other way.
On account o f small-pox at Camp Watts Major Swanson has very properly directed that the conscripts must not be sent to camp until further orders. If allowed to join Colonel Clanton, and he be authorized to muster them in as infantry, cavalry, or artillery, as they may agree, the public service will be promoted. I shall have to depend mainly upon the volunteers without the conscript age, for in the counties enumerated there are but a few hundred conscripts left. No counties in Alabama have contributed their resources more freely and unreservedly than they, and now, in their weakness and isolation, I appeal to the Confederate Government to allow their remaining few able to render military service to organize for the protection of their own homes. I insist that this application is a most reasonable one, and the country referred to has a right to expect a favorable response to it. General Cobb reports on the 2 7th December last only 800 men under his command in his entire district. I trust it may be compatible with the public service to allow him to re-enforce his command upon the plan submitted by him to the Department.
In conclusion allow me to express the hope that the mission of my aide-de-camp may not be unavailing, and that the people of West Florida and Southeastern Alabama, who are advised of my efforts in their behalf as well as myself, may not be disappointed in their and my own reasonable expectations.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNO. GILL SHORTER,
Governor of Alabama.
SPECIAL ORDERS, ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, No. 11.
Richmond, January 14, 1863.
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XVIII. Lieutenant General E. Kirby Smith is assigned to the command of the Southwestern Army, embracing the Department of West Louisiana and Texas. The geographical limits of this command will hereafter be separate and distinct from the command of the Trans-Mississippi Department, named in previous orders.
Lieutenant-General Smith will proceed with his staff to Alexandria, La., and assume this command.
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By command of the Secretary of War:
SPECIAL ORDERS, HEADQUARTERS, No. 17.
Port Hudson, La., January 14, 1863.
IX. The following disposition will be made of the cavalry of this district, viz:
Colonel Wingfield's regiment, to be stationed at this post, to furnish all the details required in this immediate vicinity.