Captain Fauntleroy, of the C. S. Navy, an officer of merit and experience, will go immediately to Houston to consul with you. Whatever you may do will meet with my approval, and i will take the responsibility of the act with the authorities at Richmond.
I am, general, sincerely yours, &c.,
E. KIRBYS SMITH,
[Inclosure Numbers 6.]
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT,
Shreveport, La., June 28, 1863.
Major General J. B. MAGRUDER,
Commanding, &c., Houston, Tex.:
GENERAL: This letter be handed to you by Captain Fauntleroy, of C. S. Navy, who goes to Houston to confer with you in regard to the English war vessel reported to you off the mouth of the Rio Grande by Lieutenant-Colonel Gray.
The vessel should be examined, according to the usages of the navy, by a naval officer. I have directed Captain Fauntleroy to inspect her thoroughly.
Should he report favorably, you will take the necessary steps for the purchase, with as little delay as possible, and Captain Fountleroy will be placed in commanding.
Should she prove unsuitable for a war vessel, it may be advisable to purchase her guns, and have them placed at some point where they could be made available for the vessels of war being constructed by our Government in Europe.
Captain Fountleroy will consult with you on the whole subject, and the result of your action, when reported to me, will be approved, and all the responsibility of the act assumed by me. Yet if I knew of any naval officer in this department who was authorized to act in this matter, I would prefer his doing so.
Respectfully, yours, &c.,
E. KIRBY SMITH,
UNOFFICIAL.] HEADQUARTERS, &C.,
Houston, Tex., June 29, 1863.
Lieutenant General E. KIRBY SMITH,
Commanding Trans-Mississippi Department:
GENERAL: In my letter of yesterday to Brigadier-General Boggs, your chief of staff, I stated that I desired to meet you at Rusk, Cherokee County, on or about the 15th of July, but, on reflection, I think it would be better to fix our day of meeting on the 20th, if agreeable to yourself, as the great amount of business requiring my immediate attention will detain me here until that time. I particularly desire this meeting, general, as there are many things I wish to consult with you upon besides the cotton question, which I could not do so fully on paper. I shall cheerfully and cordially second you in every respect, and I do not wish you to think that I fear any responsibility myself in writing to you and requesting you to give me authority to impress cotton, but rather regard it as an evidence of my desire to act in conformity with your views first, and an assurance of my full and hearty support. Please let me know at your earliest convenience if you can