composed of Eighth Virginia Regiment, Captain Sheffey commanding; Twenty-first Virginia Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Edmundson; Thirty-sixth Virginia Battalion, Captain Krtley; Thirty-seventh Virginia battalion, Major Claiborne; Twenty-seventh Battalion, Thirty-fourth Battalion, Sixty-fourth Regiment: The last three commands being on distant service, scattered about at wide intervals, were not inspected. Present at inspection, 66 officers, 887 men. Three regimental or battalion commanders in arrest. There is an examining board for the brigade to inquire into the competency of officers, but none have been examined. With the exception of hate eighth Virginia, there are no schools of tactics in the regiments. Company and battalion drills very rare. Some companies have not drilled for six months; others only once in four weeks. Officers and men seem unfamiliar with tactics. One hundred and sixty-nine men absent without leave, who went off on furlough.
Clothing not good; pantaloons particularly needed. Fifty-nine men entirely without shoes, 64 entirely without a blanket, 197 dismounted men. Subsistence as in the infantry. Horses of good bone, but in low order. They need three weeks' rest and good feeding on grass and corn before they will be fit for a campaign. Saddles, mixed; McClellan, Texan, citizen, &c. All good except about six Jenifer saddles in each company, of Government manufacture which were invariably reported to hurt the horses' backs. I believe this would be the report of every cavalry officer in service, and if not already done the manufacture of this saddle ought to be stooped.
Forage is purchased by regimental quartermasters and drawn from the depots.
Average issue per private animal, last quarter; Eight Regiment, 8 pounds corn, one-half allowance hay; Twenty-first Regiment, 8 pounds hay; Thirty-six Battalion, 5 pounds corn, 6 pounds hay; Thirty-seventh Battalion, 6 pound corn, 7 pounds hay.
Average issue last quarter to public animals: Eight Regiment, Twenty-first Regiment, Thirty-sixth Regiment, and Thirty-seventh Regiment, full allowance corn and hay.
Transportation (of the four commands inspected) consists of 36 serviceable and 6 unserviceable wagons; 36 horses (2 unserviceable), and 128 mules (5 unserviceable); 5 ambulances and 1 forge. Wagons and harness in good condition. Animals much reduced, though able to march. Arms, principally rifles, long and short, and of all sizes. (The armament report of the ordnance officer has been mislaid, and hence particulars cannot be given.) A few companies only are armed with sabers. The guns were all rusty; three hundred are needed. No regular company books are kept. At regimental headquarters there are files of orders and morning-report books. The men have not been regularly charged with lost or damaged arms, except perhaps in the Eighth. Commanders report that damagers to private property have always been settled for. The Articles of War have not been read on parade within six months. General sanitary condition good. The brigade was bivouacked 7 miles north of the salt-works. Bearing (except in the Eighth Virginia unmilitary.