War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0897 Chapter XXX. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.- CONFEDERATE.

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WILMINGTON, N. C., February 27, 1863.

Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:

SIR: I think it necessary in the present aspect of matters on this coast to have another brigade. It should be placed in Brunswick County. If the attack should be made definitely on Charleston it can be readily thrown to re-enforce General Beauregard. With it should be sent a battery of long-range guns. The field batteries in my command are very indifferent, being mostly 6-pounders, smooth, and 12-pounder howitzers. A cavalry force in Brunswick would also be of great service. It is reported that the enemy make boat expeditions about the inlets (Shallotte and Little River), to attack the steamers running the blockade. They are armed with the Dahlgren boat howitzer, and it is said some of these have captured the Wave Queen, with a very valuable cargo of saltpeter and powder. I am not certain of the truth of this for I do not see how row-boats can take a steamer at sea; but it may be so. Foster has certainly left New Berne on his way from Washington to Port Royal. I have information that he impressed and carried with him all the pilots he could get in Beaufort, N. C., familiar with the North Carolina coast. This is ominous, and the design may be that, having failed to surprise Charleston, they may attempt this as the weakest place, as after their Vicksburg failure they went to Arkansas Post. the movement any heavy guns can be sent me I hope they will be forwarded with dispatch. My arrangement is sadly inadequate.

Very respectfully,

W. H. C. WHITING,

Brigadier-General.

STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA, EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT,

Raleigh, N. C., February 27, 1863.

Brigadier-General DAVIS, Knoxville, Tenn.:

GENERAL: In my last letter to you I referred to a report that a number of prisoners taken on Laurel had been shot in cold blood, and expressed the hope it might not prove true. I fear, however, that it is even worse than was first reported. I beg leave to ask your attention to the copy inclosed of a part of a letter* from A. S. Merrimon, esq., attorney for the State in that district, and to respectfully request you to make inquiry against the guilty parties. While expressing again my thanks for the promote aid rendered by your command in quieting the troubles in that region, I cannot reconcile it to my sense of duty to pass by in silence such cruel and barbarous conduct as is alleged to have characterized a portion of them, and more especially as the officers mentioned are citizens of this State.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Z. B. VANCE.

STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA, EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT,

Raleigh, N. C., February 28, 1863.

Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON, Secretary of War:

SIR: Some six months since a disturbance occurred in Madison County, North Carolina, near the Tennessee border, by some disloyal persons cap-

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