War of the Rebellion: Serial 049 Page 0808 OPERATIONS IN N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XLI.

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to the enemy the strongest inducement to attempt the invasion in large force. Of course, it is for the War Department to designate the points at which troops are needed, and to order them there. But I deem it my duty to state strongly to the Department my convinction that no troops can be withdrawn from this department without running great risk of losing for a time this section of country, including the salt-works and lead mines.

So far from being able to spare any part of my command, I think an additional force should be sent here, and have so stated to the Secretary of War and General Lee. I hope they will concur with me and send the force. General Bragg has pressed the enemy from Loudon back upon Knoxville. If an additional force were placed upon this end of the line, he might be so pressed as to draw him out of East Tennessee, either by force or by so stripping the country of supplies as to render it impracticable to winter his troops in that country.

The Eighth Virginia Cavalry is now in East Tennessee, and the Fourteenth in front of Lewisburg. To reach General Lee's army, the Eighth Regiment would have to march 300 miles or more. It probably would not be fit for service for a week or two after so long a march, and thus its services would be lost during all the month of November. This I think an additional reason why it should not be moved from here at this time.

I am somewhat surprised that Major-General Stuart should have designated the two best cavalry regiments in my command, and ask that those particular regiments be taken from me and given to him. If he needed a part of my cavalry, it would I think, have been more in accordance with military usage and courtesy to have specified the number and left me to designate the troops.

I sent the greater part of my cavalry to General Stuart last spring. It has been recently returned to me reduced far beyond what might have been expected from the casualties of a campaign, and the greater part of that returned to me was in wretched condition, and much of it is not yet fit for service. I do not wish the Eighth and Fourteenth Regiments to share the same fate, and must, therefore, most respectfully urge that the order assigning them to General Stuart be revoked.

With very great respect, your obedient servant,




NOVEMBER 2, 1863.

Respectfully referred to General Lee.

The Secretary of War is of opinion that if it becomes aboslutely necessary to withdraw any cavalry from Major-General Jones' command, it would be better to take any than the regiments already called for by General Stuart.


Adjutant and Inspector General.

RICHMOND, October 30, 1863.

Major General W. H. C. WHITING, Wilmington, N. C.:

There is no cavalry force here to send you, and I know not where it is to be had from any quarter.


Adjutant and Inspector General.