I have telegraphed to General Foster to send you every man he can spare from his department, and will send you drafted men as rapidly as we can get them. I cannot take troops from the Mississippi River without seriously interfering with operations of the greatest importance.
Why can you not employ negroes from the plantations as laborers in moving ordnance and materiel, and in digging trenches, throwing up batteries, &c., and thus save your men?
Draw from other posts in your department every man that can possibly be spared. I will do all I can for you, but you must not expect impossibilities.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. HALLECK,
HEADQUARTERS EIGHTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
New Berne, N. C., July 29, 1863.
Brigadier General Q. A. GILLMORE,
Commanding Department of the South:
GENERAL: Inclosed I send orders just received from General Halleck.
In obedience thereof, I have to inform you that I am now starting Wild's colored brigade, 2,000 strong, to your assistance. I send these troops because I have no others within forty-eight hours-my only brigade in any way available, Heckman's, is up the Chowan, supporting a cavalry raid on Weldon-and because I believe they will do well and fight well under their fighting general.
Seven regiments were ordered to start, and I presume have started, from Fort Monroe. I go at once to that place, and will use every means in my power to aid you, and as strongly as possible. My most sincere wishes and hopes are with you, and I will do everything in my power to aid you with every man I can. Charleston is too important to be lost when so nearly won.
Commanding me at New Berne and at Fort Monroe, and accept my truest wishes for your success.
I am, general, with great respect, your obedient servant,
J. G. FOSTER,
WASHINGTON, July 28, 1863.-1.30 p.m.
Major General J. G. FOSTER:
Eight or nine hundred drafted men from Rhode Island have been ordered to Boston for transportation to North Carolina. More will be sent as soon as wee can get them. General Gillmore requires reenforcements. They can be obtained only from your department. Please send him all you can possibly spare, and report how many.
They will soon be replaced. Time is important in re-enforcing General Gillmore.
H. W. HALLECK,