WILMINGTON, October 25, 1864.
The following secret information has been received-orders from the enemy's headquarters: Wilmington to be attacked within sixty days from September 10. Will not attack Fort Fisher. Will land a large force at Masonborough; another below Caswell. Cavalry from Morehead City will cut railroad at Magnolia-this to be done at night. Our own troops to spike heavy guns, cut telegraph wires, and pilot the enemy to the city. State salt-works in constant communication with the enemy' ought to be broken up at once. Two large monitors with eighty others, large and small, to co-operate. Information plausible; hardly believe it about our troops; General Bragg directs me to communicate it.
W. H. C. WHITING,
(Copy to General Lee.)
OCTOBER 25, 1864.
Information from War Department that fleet was expected to sail to-day from Norfolk. You must look out for Kenansville-no troops there at all. Secret information points to Magnolia as the place where railroad is to be cut. Copy of this will be furnished. Anything yet from our friend at Norfolk?
W. H. C. WHITING,
WAR DEPARTMENT, C. S. A.,
Richmond, Va., October 26, 1864.
General R. E. LEE,
Commanding Army of Northern Virginia:
GENERAL: I have received your letter urging the importance of supplying the garrisons in the forts below Wilmington with thirty days' provisions, in case the enemy should succeed in cutting them off from the city. In reply, I have the honor to say that the subject had engaged the attention of the Department, and the need had been, in a large measure, supplied previous to the receipt of your letter, and a full supply of provisions has now been placed in the forts for the time specified by you.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
October 26, 1864.
Honorable SECRETARY OF WAR,
SIR: I have the honor to inclose copies of a letter received from Captain J. K. Mitchell, flag officer of the James River squadron, and of my reply with reference to the service to be performed by the fleet. Your attention is respectfully invited to my views of the part to be taken by the