War of the Rebellion: Serial 047 Page 0283 Chapter XL. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

Search Civil War Official Records

a sufficient force of infantry on Morris Island to effectually resist them. We have every reason to believe that General Gillmore will be speedily re-enforced, when he may attempt by an overwhelming force, to seize James Island. Should he succeed in this, Charleston will be i his power, for it can be battered down from Jaems Island. Can you not now spare us Jenkins' brigade? His coming would be eagerly welcomed by the whole State, and would inspire all with renewed hope. In this, our greatest hour of trail, it seems hard that South Carolina cannot have some of here own veteran troops (who have been fighting so long outside of her borders) to strike a blow for their own homes upon their native soil. Not that we complain. We know how the inexorable "exigencies of the service" will sometimes override all minor considerations, involving merely questions of expediency and the "fitness of things." But, really, if Charleston is to be defended with anything like to energy and tenacity with which Richmond has been, it seems absolutely necessary that something of "an army" should be, so far as possible, concentrated for its defense, even at the expense of great risk and hazard to other places. And while Virginians have been enabled to so large a degree to enjoy the privilege of fighting on the soiled of the Old Dominion-that being the portion of the Confederacy most hotly assailed-our South Carolina troops have been, necessary I know, fighting (most of them) far away from home. But now that the "tug of war" has come home to us in the Palmetto State, cannot something be indulged to State pride, and sentiment, if you choose? This is a moral element that high statesmanship will not only refuse to ignore, but will eagerly avail itself of. I assure you you cannot overestimate the effect of sending off Jenkins's seasoned troops at this juncture.

Very respectfully, yours,



Charleston, S. C., August 15, 1863.

His Excellency M. L. BONHAM,

Governor of South Carolina, Charleston, S. C.:

SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 12th instant, on yesterday, bringing again to my notice that the Sovereign Convention of the State of South Carolina, had, on the 8th of January, 1862, declared it to be-

The since of the people of South Carolina, assembled in convention, that Charleston should be defended at any cost of life or property, and that, in their deliberate judgment, they would prefer a repulse of the enemy with the entire city in ruins, to an evacuation or surrender on any terms whatever.

And, further, that you were informed that the attention of my predecessors in command having been called to this subject by the Governor and council, General Lee had "directed that Charleston should be defended to the last extremity, and if necessary the fight should be made from street to street and from house to house."

You are entirely right in your belief that I propose to defend the city to the last extremity, in accordance with the patriotic wishes of the people of South Carolina, and the instructions of my superiors.

I agree that non-combatants, as far as practicable, should be removed in time to avoid the possibility of any serious obstruction to,