the army of refugees and contrabands lately arrived, but we will shake this mass into something like order before long. Quite a large portion of the force now left here is that of the veteran volunteers, to whom the promises of furlough have not been made good. There is no end of complaint about this, and it requires a good deal of patience and coaxing to keep the men willing. I shall appeal to their patriotism and inspire them with the belief that your campaign in Virginia will be short, decisive, and successful, and that the promises made to them will soon be fulfilled.
I have permitted myself to reason in this way about this present campaign, i. e. that however the matter in Virginia may terminate, it may be a foot race to see who shall hold Eastern North Carolina. If the rebels come here, either after being driven from Virginia or after they have made a successful campaign there, we ought to be able to re-enforce as soon as they can get here. The rams from Wilmington came out a few days since and drove our blockading fleet out to sea, and they might attempt to come to Morehead. They surely could never get there if our naval force is vigilant, so I give myself no fear there. Hoping soon to hear of glorious success in Virginia,
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
I. N. PALMER,
WASHINGTON CITY, May 13, 1864.
Governor PARKER, Trenton, N. J.:
The brilliant success of the Army of the Potomac against the rebel army indicates that an increase of the force at this juncture for a short period might contribute greatly to the completion of General Grant's work and the speedy restoration of peace by the capture or destruction of the rebel forces. Congress has made provision for the employment of troops for a short term. The President desires to know whether your State could give us a militia force for 100 days, and what number, and within what time you could call in into the field. Will you honor me with a speedy answer?
EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.
MAY 13, 1864 - 6 a. m.
(Received 7 p. m.)
Lieutenant-General GRANT, In the Field
(Care of Colonel Hoffman, Belle Plain):
A dispatch has just been received from General Butler, dated in the field, near Chester Station, Va., May 12, 3.30 p. m.* He states that he is now pressing the enemy near Fort Darling, and has before him all the troops from North and South Carolina that have yet come up. A captured dispatch from Beauregard to General Hoke, commanding at Drewry's Bluff, states that Beauregard will join him as soon as rest if his troops come up. General Gillmore is left to hold the entrenchments while Smith demonstrates upon Drewry's and the enemy's lines. General Kautz has been sent with cavalry
* See p. 11.