North Carolina, I have advised General Foster fully and frequently respecting its progress, and made propositions for its destruction. The general did not feel very apprehensive, and replied that the force in the department would not warrant the undertaking.
The works at Plymouth are in a good state, and when the 200-pounder rifle reaches you, I shall have but little apprehension from the ram, unless it moves in conjunction with a land force. On my return I ordered the 100-pounder rifle at Hatteras to be sent at once to Plymouth, in order to give you all the metal possible while waiting the 200-pounder. I should place it in Fort Gray, and you must have sufficient infantry there to prevent an assault of that work. Any trees that prevent the flanking of the fort by your gunboats should be cut down. Crowd your works all you can, and keep me advised of the progress, and of all reports, &c.
I have examined a number of the artillerists in Fort Branch, Rainbow, who all agree that week before last the channel was examined and numerous torpedoes placed in position. The rebels have constructed a battery of earth of Edwards Ferry of four guns of for four guns, and have an infantry guard there. You will notice that roads from Winton, Weldon, &c., cross at the ferry. Fort Branch has twelve guns, including one 64-pounder and three 24-pounders, one 6-pounder, and the balance 12-pounder, and all rifled.
I am greatly obliged to Captain Flusser for his prompt, cheerful, and valuable co-operation on the recent movement to the headwaters of the Chowan. Captains French and Foster are worthy and deserving officers, and I regret that no opportunity offered for the navy to pay their compliments to the rebels. The demonstration was telegraphed to all the Southern press, and troops moved to meet the advance upon Weldon.
Probably General Butler will arrive by the middle of the week; if so, we shall be at Plymouth.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN J. PECK,
November 14, 1863-10. 10 a. m.
Major-General BROOKS, Erie, Pa.:
The Department has no further information in relation to the movement from Canada. * All exposed points are now guarded, so as probably to prevent any present attack. You may employ a tug for a guard-boat. General Dix is at Buffalo; General Cox at Sandusky, and you may communicate with them. Any information received here will be transmitted to you.
EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.
BUFFALO, N. Y., November 14, 1863.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: In accordance with the suggestion in your dispatch, I came here yesterday. I found no preparation whatever for the protection
*See Series III, dispatches November 11-14, 1863.