Franklin, Va., September 17, 1862-11 a. m.
Brigadier General J. J. PETTIGREW:
GENERAL: My bridge across the Blackwater will be completed with certainty in five hours. It will be strong enough to support the heaviest artillery. The damage to the village from the guns of the enemy on Monday last is of trifling importance--no damage in fact. The strength of the enemy at Suffolk on Monday last was 1,900 cavalry, five regiments of infantry, and eighteen pieces of artillery. This is reliable.
I am, general, most truly, yours,
D. D. FEREBEE,
HEADQUARTERS BAINS' FARM,
Wakefield, Va., September 17, 1862.
Major-General FRENCH, Commanding:
GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of yours of this date. I herewith inclose the letter of instructions to Colonel Owens, commanding Fifty-third Regiment North Carolina Infantry, whose regiment I wish to join me. The instructions in regard to the route I shall leave with yo to give according to your suggestions.
Very respectfully, &c.,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
COLERAIN, N. C., September 18, 1862.
Honorable ZEBULON B. VANCE, Raleigh, N. C.:
SIR: Some of the leading farmers and citizens of Bertie County had a consultation on the 15th instant in Windsor, it being Monday of superior court, for the purpose of making representations to Your Excellency in regard to the condition of affairs in this county and to ask some executive action in their behalf. Lewis Thompson, esq., was appointed to visit Raleigh and see you in person, but he not being able to go until about October 1, I was requested in the mean time to lay before you in writing the points agreed to be presented and the reasons which induced the gentlemen present to ask some action upon them.
This county is almost entirely surrounded by the waters of the Albemarle Sound and the Roanoke and Chowan Rivers, all of which are navigable to the largest of the enemy's steamers, while the Caskie River and Salmon Creek, running into the very heart of the county, are navigable to his steamers of highest draught. Upon these water-courses lie the main body of the excellent farming lands of the county, and several thousand slaves are upon these lands. The gunboats of the enemy are traversing these waters almost daily. Occasionally the enemy land a few troops at unexpected point, but so far have committed very little depredation. The military post at Plymouth is upon the very border of the county and is accessible by the water-courses above named. There is not a Confederate soldier here, and not the least show of pro-