War of the Rebellion: Serial 099 Page 0909 Chapter LIX. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. -UNION.

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would fight us with the Neuse to his rear. You may remain with General Slocum until further orders, or until the two wings come together.

If that force remains in General Slocum's front to-morrow I will move straight on its rear.




In the Field, March 19, 1865.

General W. T. SHERMAN,

Commanding Military Division of the Mississippi:

GENERAL: The enemy in heavy force, and commanded by General Johnston in person, attacked the Fourteenth Corps to-day, captured three guns, and gained a temporary success; but our lines were finally re-established. The Twentieth Corps and my cavalry came upon the field, and took up strong positions. From 2 o'clock until dark the enemy made effort to break our center, but he has failed in each attempt, and certainly with great loss. The information I sent you this morning was correct at the time it was received, but during yesterday afternoon and last evening he made forced marches, and is now in our front, and General Johnston is in command. He addressed his troops this morning, saying that he had 40,000 men, and that our army must and should be stopped here; that we were marching upon four roads; that he intended to fall upon one column after another, and dispose of the in detail. The fighting to-day has been splendid, and you can rely on your army in everything. I never witnessed more determined attacks than were made by the enemy to-day upon our center. Six were made one after another in rapid succession on the same men at the same point, General Robinson commanding, and yet I did not see a single soldier leave the line of battle. If you attack the enemy in flank and rear as you propose in your communication to me, Johnston's army, if it remains, is lost. Generals Slocum, Davis, Williams, and others, for several hours to-day anxiously listened, and only waited for the first sound of battle from the Army of the Tennessee, when they would have marched without halting over every opposition in front. I only hope to God that Johnston may remain for your attack, and you will achieve a triumph over the enemy such as no general can boast. You can expect everything that is brave and daring from my cavalry. The men have been to-day supplied with ammunition. We have plenty of forage, eight days' rations, are in good spirits, and shall anxiously watch for the morrow.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brevet Major-General, Commanding Cavalry.

KINSTON, N. C., March 19, 1865.

Major General W. T. SHARMAN:

The boats have at last arrived with supplies, and I shall push forward in the morning toward Goldsborough. I will go direct to Goldsborough if my information indicates that I can take that place. If not, I will put down my pontoon bridge at White Hall and communicate with you from that place.