War of the Rebellion: Serial 089 Page 1211 Chapter LIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.- CONFEDERATE.

Search Civil War Official Records

redoubt should be long for well-sustained musketry fire, the north and east. The east flanking the front of Fisher should, if the ground permit, have its prolongation on or so near the river as to make enfilade difficult. Though this would make the flanking angle obtuse, it would not be a disadvantage; the north face in like manner making an obtuse angle ought to have its prolongation on some part of the bar shoals to render enfilade more distant from seaward. With the exception of perhaps one heavy gun I think the armament of the redoubt should be field pieces and Whitworths, with the carronades used as mortars. Please make any suggestions about these different points and about Ramseur that occur to you.

Very respectfully, yours,




Richmond, Va., November 12, 1864.

General W. N. PENDLETON, Army of Northern Virginia:

GENERAL: I have to thank you for your letter of the 5th instant, submitting with your recommendation the abstract of a bill for the organization of the artillery of the service, drawn after consultation with General Lee, and in conformity substantially with his views. I am always grateful to receive such suggestions and to have the benefit of the experience and judgment of generals in the field on all subjects, but especially those of military organization. I regret, however, after examination, not to recognize the necessity of legislation to the extent you propose, and prefer, before commending the bill to the consideration of Congress (through its military committees) to explain to you my views. In nearly all essential particulars the bill only embodies in law and makes permanent the present organization (under the orders of the commanding general, sanctioned by the Department). Now, as this has already been done in our army by regulation, it may be extended and made uniform in all, as well by general orders of the Department as by law. In this there are decided advantages, as the whole subject will remain more free from modification and amendment as experience of the needs of the service may dictate. Organization suited for the large armies in the field may and will probably prove by no means so well adapted to smaller forces operating separately or in departments where the main duties are of defence at important cities or posts. Besides, under the system of the Provisional Army, as soon as any organizations are made by law permanent all the officers become fixed and attached to them, and cannot, except by temporary and disturbing assignments, be removed from them. So, also, with the companies, and thus advantages of transfer or selection, either of batteries or officers for special service, or as other considerations rendered advisable, would be lost. The inconveniences in these respects of the proposed legislation have been recognized by you in the provisos and powers inserted in the bill, but why first fetter the organization by law only by the same law to provide for freeing them. There is by the bill some difference made in the rank and number of the officers, but as the field officers are, as now, made to depend on the number of guns in relation to them, I see no occasion for legislation. Full authority, too, already exists in the Department to appoint commissaries, quartermasters, and even chaplains, as you propose. A special adjutant cannot be appointed, but one of the lieuten-