War of the Rebellion: Serial 099 Page 0805 Chapter LIX. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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HDQRS. NORTHERN DISTRICT, DEPT. OF THE SOUTH,

Charleston, S. C., March 12, 1865.

Major General Q. A. GILLMORE,

Commanding Department of the South:

GENERAL: Your note with reference to the minimum garrison of Charleston is received. Captain Suter goes down in the Coit and will communicate to you the substance of our conversion. As a minimum garrison, to hold the harbor only until relief could be obtained from the North, 1,000 men, with the assistance of the navy, would probably be sufficient. A garrison of 2,500 for the defenses and 500 as city police (total, 3,000), will probably be sufficient to hold the place and its immediate vicinity after the new defenses are completed. The present force should, in my opinion, be retained until the works are complete. The weather has been so bad that little has yet been done toward them. It is important that Suter should return here as soon as possible.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN P. HATCH,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HDQRS. NORTHERN DISTRICT, DEPT. OF THE SOUTH,

Charleston, S. C., March 12, 1865.

Captain W. L. M. BURGER,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that General Potter's troops are now all returned to the city with the exception of some of the artillery, which will be here to-day. I have made the following disposition of the troops to enable us to complete the defenses at an early day: Bvt. Brigadier General A. S. Hartwell's brigade, at the Charleston Neck; Colonel C. H. Van Wyck's brigade, at Mount Pleasant; the brigade from General Prince's command, south of the Ashley River. The remainder of the troops of Brigadier-General Schimmelfennig's command are occupying the forts on James, Sullivan's and Morris Islands. I would respectfully call the attention of the department commander to the organization of the command into a division of two or three brigades. It would not only facilitate the transaction of business here, but would give us organized bodies for future movements. The creating provisional brigades for service in the field has worked very badly. The brigades made up of parts of regiments necessarily became to a certain extent demoralized from being under officers unknown to them. Muster and pay rolls and returns are not forwarded promptly as they should be. Staff officers have to be sought and instructed in these duties at a time when well qualified ones are most needed. The suffering of the men from these causes can only be understood by actually observing it as I have.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN P. HATCH,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HDQRS. NORTHERN DISTRICT, DEPT. OF THE SOUTH,

Charleston, S. C., March 12, 1865.

Captain W. L. M. BURGER,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of yesterday's date with instructions about hastening the forma-