horses are unfit for immediate service. I have entertained the opinion expressed as to an attack on Wilmington, and therefore my recommendation for an increase of heavy guns, especially at Fort Fisher. I am glad to see that General Hill's attention is directed to procuring supplies from Eastern North Carolina and to promoting the cultivation of the next crop. His views are generally approved, and he should be all practicable means be aided and encouraged to execute them. General Long street can take care of the routes to and from Suffolk by detachments from his command.
Wilmington, N. C., February 23, 1863.
Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:
SIR: The inadequacy of the armament for the defense of this important district has been frequently set forth. The urgent necessities of other position threatened by the enemy have divided many of the requisitions intended for this place, and I am well aware of the difficulty of procuring in the present state of our resources a sufficiency of guns of heavy caliber; but in the mean time can you not give me a battery of 30 or 20 pounder Parrotts for the river defenses? They would be of great service here, and their mobility would add to their efficiency. I beg also that, as soon as possible, three 10-inch columbiads and three 7-inch rifles may be sent me. These guns are absolutely necessary to defend the outer harbor, the point of all others we must endeavor to keep.
W. H. C. WHITING,
[FEBRUARY 24, 1863.- For D. H. Hill to Beauregard, and reply of March 1, see Series I, Vol. XIV, pp. 789, 798.]
February 24, 1863.
Captain J. H. PEARCE,
CAPTAIN: I deem it proper to report that a deserter from the Yankee forces, who has just been sent in by Captain Hill, reports that there are some 6,000 troops at Yorktown and that fresh troops are constantly being landed there. This deserter seems to have passed the cavalry pickets and fallen in with some of Captain Hill's men. It is proper for me also to report that there are four cases of small-box in Captain Hill's company, who have been placed in hospital near Barhamsville.
R. T. W. DUKE,
Respectfully forward to Major General A. Elzey for his information.
HENRY A. WISE,