HEADQUARTERS PETTIGREW'S BRIGADE,
April [May] 3, 1863.
Major T. O. CHESTNEY, Assistant Adjutant-General:
MAJOR: From what General Elzey tells me it is very probably that the Eleventh Regiment North Carolina troops, now here, and the Fifty-second and Forty-fourth, expected, will be sent up to me at Hanover Junction to-night. Please order wagons to carry their ammunition to them (railroad depot), and let your quarters point out to them where their baggage can be stored, for they have no wagons.
J. J. PETTIGREW,
Near Suffolk, Va., May 3, 1863.
Major General S. G. FRENCH, Commanding Division:
GENERAL: The commanding general desires you to be extremely careful in the selection of officer to relieve and conduct your picket line to-night. Let only those be chosen who are thoroughly acquainted with the roads they are to take. Generals Hood and Pickett are instructed to communicate freely with each other and to you such matters of note as may occur. Will you also keep them advised of anything that may come under you observation?
I am, general, very respectfully,
G. MOXLEY SORREL,
Wilmington, N. C., May 3, 1863.
Major-General HILL, Commanding, &c., Kinston, N. C.:
I send you a letter* from Shays, containing some interesting reports, which though he does not vouch for them, many have something in them. He writes from Swansborough, which you know is at the mouth of White Oak. No doubt the enemy is fortifying at Carolina City to protect the terminus of the railroad in case of retreat and against raids. He may have a design also of putting some works on White Oak, being perhaps alarmed by the activity of out troops lately and fearing a descent upon their communications. Any advance toward Swansborough would be doubtless with that view or to harry the country. In that case cavalry would move toward Smith's Mill to prevent the force from being cut off.
I am sorry you insist upon Cook's brigade going to Magnolia. The importance of this place and the very limited number of troops at my command indicate that those few should be the best possible, not the worst. It must be said in addition that when threatened, no matter from what quarter, i am expected to hold the enemy in check until assistance can be sent me. To do this I must not sit down behind breastworks, but must maneuver. It was to get reliable troops that I consented to exchange Evans for Cooke. However, I will go to work on Clingman's brigade and get it into shape. If it were not for some of the officers I dare say there would be but little different. Two Brooke rifles belonging to the Raleigh are on their way for me. Please give orders to hurry
* Not found.
64 R R-VOL XVIII