knowing my position could cross the rive below Suffolk - it being very low - and cut me off or put me to much inconvenience.
Every point is guarded; I have drawn back my main body this side of Jericho Canal. The town is thoroughly patrolled and every avenue well guarded. Couriers are saddled ready to convey any intelligence to your headquarters. My rear is now all I fear between here and Hargrove's half-way house. I have one day's rations and forage after to-day.
I am, general, with high respect, your obedient servant,
S. P. SPEAR,
NORFOLK, VA., August 25, 1863.
Spear reports Griffin's cavalry and two regiments of infantry at Franklin, and Baker's cavalry and one regiment of infantry at Ivor Station. Spear says a force is now collecting 3 miles beyond Zuni to march to Bowers' Hill. Informant says large force of infantry and artillery. I dislike to recommend you to withdraw any force from North Carolina. Could you not get re-enforcements from the North? Ask for the Eighth New York and Thirty-fourth Massachusetts, at Harper's Ferry, both splendid regiments; 1,700 in the two.
HDQRS. U. S. FORCES IN NORTH CAROLINA, New Berne, August 25, 1863.
Major General J. G. FOSTER,
Commanding Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina:
GENERAL: Sine my last communication upon the defenses of this place I have had an interview with Commodore Davenport, senior naval officer on this station. From him I learn that the naval force on the sounds is to be reduced materially by Admiral Lee, and that in all probability not more than once or two gunboats will be retained here. This change of policy results from the belief that the works which have been constructed are sufficient.
In view of this proposed change I must again refer to the defenses of New Berne. The system of works is very complete upon the present status of naval co-operation. Without this, Fort Spinola would be untenable with a rebel battery on the opposite bank near Duck Creek. In possession of that point and the south side of the Trent, the enemy would make this position very uncomfortable. By completing the water front of Spinola, or constructing an inclosed work on the point already mentioned, the system would be complete. This connection, I will state that it is reported that an old road runs down to the river near Duck Creek.
Batchelder's Creek. - On visiting the command at the outpost under Colonel Claassen, I found everything in most excellent order, and the health of the troops far better than in other localities. There is a large amount of sickness in the Ninth New Jersey, and in some of the Massachusetts regiments, which is attributed to the raid or raids made by them. After consultation, I have decided to send the New Jersey regiment down to the sea-shore for a few weeks.