at or near Blue Pond to check enemy's advance from Palatka. If enemy should be too strong for you, fall back toward Waldo, and keep your communication open with this army. Should the enemy attempt a raid upon Silver Springs, or Ocala, Colonel Harris must co-operate with the infantry and endeavor to defeat it. Finegan's whole command must come here. You will be advised by telegraph of movements occurring here.
WM. G. BARTH,
The foregoing instructions are repeated lest they might have failed to reach you by telegraph. Be pleased to inform me whether you received them.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WM. G. BARTH,
ROYALL'S HOUSE, April 8,1 864.
Two of torpedo-boats have been obliged to return owing to derangement of engines. David has gone through.
A. R. CHISOLM,
SAVANNAH, GA., April 8, 1864.
General G. T. BEAUREGARD:
DEAR GENERAL: I did not answer your telegram in reference to a successor in this command by the wires, because, for certain reasons, I feel unwilling to indorse the name suggested by yourself. My unwillingness does not arise from objections to the officer in question such much, but because there are certain local and social entanglements here that ought, for the good of the service, to be broken up. This cannot be accomplished by the officer suggested. My experience has led me to the conviction that military service cannot be efficiently performed if the control be left entirely with local persons, and especially in cases where there is a wide family connection making clamorous and constant demands for favorites. The public interest in such cases is forced to bend to private considerations. I know of no place where the service demands more decidedly than here that the commanding officer should be independent of such influences, and free to act simply for the public good. As soon as possible many of he organizations that are here, and that have been here from the beginning of the war, should be sent to a more active field. The tone and spirit of these organizations are not what they should be, and I think that the best remedy, when it can be applied, is to send them to some other theater of operations, where active service will brush away monotony and discontent. The material composing the commands referred to is good, but its usefulness will be destroyed if the present inactivity be much longer continued.
As I could not say all this in a telegram I concluded to communicate it by this semi-official note.
I am, general, very truly, yours,
J. F. GILMER,