HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,
Charleston, S. C., August 20, 1864.
GENERAL: General Foster's reply to your communication in regard to the families of deserters from our army was forwarded to you a day or two since. I did not see the communication, but learn that he decided in substance to receive the families of those only who had deserted and gone into the department which he commands, at the same time inclosing a list of such as he was satisfied to receive. Should this letter not reach you, any information desired can be readily furnished by Major J. F. Lay, assistant inspector-general, who has been intrusted with the management of this business. Communications to General Foster, if forwarded under cover to Major Lay, will be delivered by the first flag of truce. Meanwhile the major-general commanding directs me to say that whilst he will not interfere with those who have already sold their property or given up their employments under his previous promise, he is satisfied that sound policy requires that hereafter no more permits be granted. When men know that their families will be sent to them the discontented or disloyal will risk the danger of being caught in the attempt and be the more ready to desert to the enemy. To allow their families to follow deserters through our lines is in many cases to induce desertions which family ties would otherwise prevent.
Very respectfully, general, your obedient servant,
CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW,
ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, Numbers 200.
Richmond, August 24, 1864.
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XXIV. Major J. L. Cross, assistant adjutant-general, Provisional Army, C. S., is relieved from duty in the Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, and assigned to duty with Major General R. F. Hoke's division. He will report to General G. T. Beauregard, commanding, &c.
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By command of the Secretary of War:
HEADQUARTERS SOUTH FLORIDA FORCES,
Wall's Farm, August 25, 1864.
Captain S. A. MORENO,
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that I arrived at this place, Wall's farm, on the Etoniah Creek, in Putnam County, on yesterday afternoon, the 24th instant. From the best information I have been enabled to derive the enemy is stationed at Magnolia, in numbers reported to be between 2,000 and 3,000 strong. This is said to be an infantry force, a majority of whom are negroes. It is likewise reported to me that the enemy has a cavalry force of about 100 or 150