War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0884 NORTH CAROLINA AND S. E. VIRGINIA. Chapter XXX.

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agricultural interests of the country. You will require at least two battalions of your artillery and probably one of your reserve corps. The horses are in such a reduced state and the country so saturated with water that it will be almost impossible for them to drag the guns. They might be transported by railroad, by which route all heavy baggage, if possible, should also be conveyed and the battery horses be led. I wish you to inform me where I can communicate with you.

To inform yourself of the movements of the enemy in your front and to keep me advised I suggest that you report to the Secretary of War, on your arrival in Richmond, as he will have information and possibly some orders to communicate.

It will be well to have Lane's battery at some favorable point on the James River, to destroy the enemy's transports if they should ascend.

I am, with much respect, your obedient servant,

R. E. LEE.

RICHMOND, VA., February 18, 1863.

Major General GEORGE E. PICKETT, Commanding, &c.:

GENERAL: The Secretary of War directs that on your arrival with your division you take position on the south side of the James River in immediate vicinity of Drewry's Bluff, and there await further orders. You will have in view the defense of Chaffin's and Drewry's Bluffs, keeping yourself advised and ready to move if necessary to repel advances from the Blackwater and to defend the city of Petersburg.

Very respectfully, &c.,

S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General.

ENGINEER BUREAU,

Richmond, Va., February 18, 1863.

Lieutenant Colonel W. H. STEVENS,

Corps of Engineers, C. S. A., Richmond, Va.:

COLONEL: His Excellency the President has been informed that the works for the defense of Weldon Bridge are being built on a scale that will require a large force, say several thousands of men, to defend them, and has sent to this Bureau to ascertain if such is the fact. In my original instructions to Colonel Gwynn he was directed in all cases to give the works for defending points in the rivers of North Carolina a development such that they could be held by a small force, say 400 or 500 men, until relieved by a succoring force. These instructions are fully approved by the President. If defenses of a different character have original directions carried out as far as the nature of the ground will, in your judgment, permit.

Very respectfully, yours,

J. F. GILMER,

Colonel and Chief of Bureau.

ENGINEER BUREAU,

Richmond, Va., February 18, 1863.

Colonel WALTER GWYNN, Weldon, N. C.:

COLONEL: In reply to your communication of the 14th instant I have to state that it is important that the works in progress for the defenses