he returned to that country, I think some advantages can be gained. Your two regiments have been ordered back to you from North Carolina, and I presume have reached you before this. One of Marshall's has also been returned to him. The other probably may be detained where it is. With Marshall in Kentucky, in front of the approaches by Pound Gap, you closed down toward the Sandy, and Imboden in the northwest, I fear no advance toward Lewisburg or the Virginia and Tennessee Railroad, and a regiment or two sent across from that portion of your line to join Imboden at Monterey, or some other designated point, I should think would be attended with little or no risk. We have got to operate boldly but prudently, if we desire to accomplish anything. If you cannot, however, part with any of your troops, I would recommend you concentrate them, and strike at some assailable point; you might accomplish much in that way. There is no better way of defending a long line than by moving into the enemy's country.
Write at least to Imboden, and tell him what you can do, and if you cannot co-operate with him in the northwest, you might concert with him some plan, capable of simultaneous execution on your part, by which the operations of each might be advanced and greater success attained. I hope you will be able to strike them a damaging blow somewhere this summer, so as to open that country to us, for a time at least, that we may communicate with our friends, and obtain all the men and subsistence we can bring out.
I am, with great respect, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
March 21, 1863.
Brigadier General WILLIAM N. PENDLETON,
GENERAL: Your letter of March 19 has been received. I commend the arrangements which you so promptly made to guard against an attack from the enemy's cavalry. It will be well to keep a strict lookout at all times, and have guns always ready raking the roads and commanding the approaches to your encampments, as we may not be able to give you notice of every raid of the enemy through our lines early enough. Do not, however, distress your horses. With regard to the horses in the rear, it will be well to try and lay in a stock of forage, and send for them on April 1, if the weather is good; but if the weather and roads continue at that time in bad condition, you can defer bringing them up still longer. You can use your own judgment in this respect.
By a telegram from Major [John F.] Whitfield, it appears that the shipment of corn to Milford was stopped on 6th of March, by order of Colonel Myers. I suppose that was through an erroneous impression as to the position of the artillery. The shipment has, however, been resumed. While every exertion will be made to bring up full supplies of corn and hay, it will be well for the artillery officers to make personal efforts to get what they can around them. The half rations of wheat chop are an acceptable change to the horses, and, with the limited supplies of hay and corn, are within the limit allowed by the Department as the prices of rations.
You can send the bronze 6 pounders down at once, as Lieutenant