Abstract from return of the Department of Western Virginia, Major General Samuel Jones, C. S. Army, commanding, for the month of January, 1863; headquarters, Dublin Depot.
Present for duty.
Command. Officers. Men. Aggregate
First and Third 69 1,117 1,343
Brigades (G. G.
Second Brigade (John 94 1,431 1,727
Fourth Brigade (John 52 945 1,151
Cavalry Brigade (A. 148 1,561 1,996
Artillery. 30 699 1,060
Total. 393 5,753 7,277
Aggregate Aggregate Pieces of
Command. present and last return. artillery.
First and Third 1,736 2,029
Brigades (G. G.
Second Brigade (John 2,199 2,271
Fourth Brigade (John 1,636 1,781
Cavalry Brigade (A. 3,296 3,115
Artillery. 1,276 650 37
Total. 10,143 9,846 37
DUBLIN DEPOT, February 1, 1863.
Major General J. B. FLOYD,
Commanding Virginia State Line, near Saltville, Va.:
GENERAL: I have just now received your letter of yesterday. I am sorry that I cannot at present concentrate a large force at the salt-works. If you will give me early notice of the advance of the enemy, I can send 1,200 or 1,500 men to the salt-works as soon as railroad transportation can be provided. In less than twenty-four hours from the time I receive the information, I think the men ought to be at the works.
The artillery battalion now at Jeffersonville is so near you that it ought certainly to be able to reach the works in time to take part in their defense, if your scouts give notice promptly of the approach of the enemy. I will direct the officer commanding the battalion, on receiving information from you of the advance of the enemy, to proceed promptly with his battalion to any point you may indicate.
Could a sufficient force of negroes be obtained at reasonable hire, in the counties adjacent to the salt-works, to construct the desired defensive works? The manufacture of salt is so essential, and the works near you are engaged on so many contracts for the Confederate and State Governments, that I should not like to impress their hands except on the most pressing emergency. I fully concur with you as to the inconvenience of the boundary line recently established for my department. I addressed a letter to the Adjutant-General, pointing out the inconvenience, and asked him at least to give the commander of the Department of East Tennessee orders for the defense of the approaches to the salt-works, through his department (chiefly by Louisa Fork and Pound Gap), and communicate his instructions on that point to me, but have received no answer.
What is the date of your information from the Kanawha? I have information from the same quarter that there are only three regiments of infantry, three companies of cavalry, and two batteries at Fayette Court-House.
This information was given to me on the 23rd ultimo.
Very respectfully, &c.,