enforcements. I had ordered two companies to march at daylight to his assistance when I received orders from General Hill to move to Hamilton. My men were being drilled at the 32-pounder guns (mounted) and officers were being made acquainted with the topography of the country.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. C. GIBBS,
Colonel Forty-second North Carolina Regiment, Commanding Post.
GREENVILLE, N. C., March 27, 1863.
Colonel GEORGE C. GIBBS, Forty-second North Carolina:
COLONEL: The reports from our scouts indicate an advance upon Hamilton. I wish you to move down there immediately, and if necessary call on Lieutenant-Colonel Brown to aid you. I have written to Lieutenant-General Longstreet to guard Weldon during your absence. Hamilton must be held at all hazards.
D. H. HILL,
FREDERICKSBURG, VA., March 28, 1863.
General JAMES LONGSTREET:
General W. E. Jones reports the Ninth Corps (Burnside's) started West last Sunday by the Pennsylvania Central and Baltimore and Ohio, supposed for Kentucky. Are the troops still at Newport News?
R. E. LEE.
Respectfully referred to Major-General French, with request that he direct his scouts to be more particular and minute in reports.
HEADQUARTERS FORCES ON BLACKWATER,
March 28, 1863.
GENERAL: I returned yesterday from a visit to Broadwater Bridge, & c. I met General Corse at Ivor, and we rode over the whole neighborhood and line together. Upon close examination of the country he concluded to take position with his brigade at Tucker Swamp Church, about 1 1/2 miles from Ivor, putting one regiment near Broadwater Bridge to picket that point and Proctor's Bridge, and send a guard of four men each to Wall's and Birch Island Bridges. Another regiment at my request he placed a mile from his headquarters toward Seacock Swamp, to cover and picket Joiner's Ford. This arrangement, in my judgment, renders the line of Blackwater perfectly secure. My reason for desiring him to picket Joiner's Ford was that it was a very critical point to his position, and that while I picketed it, Seacock Swamp being difficult to cross even with the bridge, might prevent supports to the picket arriving in time; also if he moved either up or down he would gather his brigade as he went, and thus would have all the advantages of concentration.