War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0980 NORTH CAROLINA AND S. E. VIRGINIA.

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Richmond, Va., April 11, 1863.

General W. H. C. WHITING,

Wilmington, N. C.:

I have requested General Longstreet to send Ransom's or some other brigade to Wilmington to replace Evans' brigade.


Secretary of War.


Wilmington, N. C., April 11, 1863.

Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:

SIR: I received your telegram referring to General Beauregard's apprehension of an attack by Bull's Bay. If well founded this is a very serious demonstration, and, combined with the fact that the enemy is in force in the Sounds below Charleston, where his base is, it will make the successful defense of the city and surrounding country a very difficult problem with the force at General Beauregard's command. The object of a demonstration by Bull's Bay might either be the establishment in force on the Haddrell's Point side, isolation of Sullivan's Island, and bombardment of the city, or an attempt to cut the North Carolina Railroad, or both. With regard to my power to assist General Beauregard, you are aware that my force is already much reduced by the absence of General Ransom's brigade for the operations against Foster about New Berne and Washington, in which also General Longstreet, by letter of 8th instant, desires me to co-operate if possible. The only available force here is Evans' brigade, not a very strong one. Of this I must taken the responsibility, upon your telegram, of sparing three regiments to General Beauregard, though I must earnestly urge that their place be supplied at once, with the double view of giving him, in case of necessity, further and much needed aid and of preventing all risk here where I am by no means as strong as I desire to be and where the presence of troops is at all times necessary as well for labor as for defense. With regard to the water defenses, I hope you will be able to let me have at least tow Brooke rifles, one for each entrance, those guns appearing to have been most effective against monitors.

Very respectfully,




Wilmington, N. C., April 11, 1863.

Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:

SIR: A letter of Flag-Officer [William F.] Lynch to Secretary of the Navy, with accompanying letter of Senator [George] Davis, of North Carolina, has been referred to me as relating to the defense of the Cape Fear. There are several points in both letters (mistakes as well as improprieties) upon which I might remark with some animadversion. I will simply refer to them: In the first place, the battery to which Flag-Officer Lynch refers, March 13, has not been discontinued, but (although the guns will be needed for the North Carolina) is prepared for mounting others; second, the river obstructions are not only much further