HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,
Hilton Head, S. C., April 16, 1865.
Major General W. T. SHERMAN:
GENERAL: I have a dispatch from General Potter, commanding the expedition sent to the interior of South Carolina, dated Sumterville, April 10. * He met there a brigade of the enemy on its way to join Johnston, and routed them, capturing 3 pieces of artillery and losing but 30 men. Potter's cavalry has gone to Manchester, whither he will follow, and then determine his future operations. He is moving in a part of the country not touched by any of our armies, and has destroyed immense amounts of property, including bridges, railroad buildings, and rolling-stock, cotton, lumber, and Government supplies. I think all your instructions will be carried out in that quarter. My aide-de-camp, Lieutenant G. W. James, is directed to wait twelve hours for an answer.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Q. A. GILLMORE,
Major-General of Volunteers.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH, Numbers 45.
Hilton Head, S, C., April 16, 1865.
The headquarters of this department are hereby changed from Fort Sumter to Hilton Head, S. C.
By command of Major General Q. A. Gillmore:
W. L. M. BURGER,
New Berne, N. C., April 17, 1865 - 9 p. m. (Received 2,30 p. m. 19th.)
Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT,
GENERAL: The following telegram is just received from General Sherman and forwarded to you by his direction:
RALEIGH, N. C., April 17, 1865 - 7 p. m.
I have returned from a point twenty-seven miles up the railroad, where I had a long interview with General Johnston, with a full and frank interchange of opinion. He evidently seeks to make terms for Jeff. Davis and his cabinet. He wanted to conslut again with Mr. Breckinridge at Greensborough, and I have agreed to meet him at noon to-morrow at the same place. we lose nothing in time, as by agreement both armies stand still and the roads are drying up, so that if I am forced to pursue we will be able to make better speed. There is great danger that the Confederate armies will dissolve and fill the whole land with robbers and assassins, and I think this is one of the difficulties that Johnston labors under. The assassination of Mr. Lincoln shows one of the elements in the rebel army which will be almost as difficult to deal withas the main armies. Communicate substance of this to General Grant, and also that if General Sheridan is marching down this way to geel for me before striking the enemy. I don't want Johnston's army to break up in fragments.
W. T. SHERMAN,
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, &c.,
R. M. SAWYER,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General.
* See p. 161.