MACON, GA., March 6, 1865.
D. H. KENNEY,
Colonel Brent telegraphs that the impressment must proceed.
J. B. EUSTIS,
HDQRS. DISTRICT OF WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA,
Asheville, March 6, 1865.
Colonel W. H. TAYLOR,
Asst. Adjt. General, Hdqrs. Armies of the Confederate States:
COLONEL: Some weeks since I addressed you a communication for the information of the general commanding, reporting the desertion of 5 officers and 125 men from the Sixty-ninth North Carolina Regiment (State troops). I herewith inclose communication from Colonel G. W. Clayton, Sixty-second North Carolina Regiment, an aggregate of 2 officers and 34 privates. Three days ago Captain John Henry Ray, originally a deserter from our army, a captain in Colonel Kirk's regiment, Federal troops, who came in under General Breckinridge's proclamation of amnesty and pardon, deserted from Yancey County, taking with him 250 men. Great dissatisfaction exists among the troops of the district, produced by various causes; in the first place, from that mentioned in my communication of the 1st instant, and again from the course pursued by the politicians left in this country. I am confidently informed there have been secret meetings held in nearly all the counties west of the Blue Ridge, to send delegates to a secret convention, which was to meet, and did meet, at Marshall, in Madison County, five days ago, to take steps to organize a new State of the eastern portion of Tennessee and Western North Carolina. Delegates from East Tennessee, officers in the federal Army some of them, were present at this convention. These county meetings were preliminary to the desertions which have occurred in this command. It has got abroad that this country is to be given up to the enemy, which impression had been fostered by the disloyal element, largely in the ascendant in this district. Another very great and moving cause of desertion is the fact that the troops of the district have not been paid since December, 1863. Repeated and urgent letter shave been forwarded with the stimates for funds, but no money had ever been received for this purpose. I am informed the enemy are making preparations for an advance from East Tennessee within the next three weeks, with the view of permanently occupying and holding this country. In the present condition of affairs in the district, and till this crisis is overpass, Captain Teague's company, ordered in your telegram (a) of 25th ultimo to be sent to General Johnston, cannot be spared. I request, therefore, I be allowed to keep them; as soon as possible the company shall be sent as directed. If it is the desire of the General-in-Chief to hold this country I would respectfully request that at listen regiment, whose officers are men of position and character, be sent at the earliest moment practicable to assist me in doing so. Persons well acquainted with the facts suggest the Eleventh North Carolina Regiment. Without something of this sort being done, and done speedily, to inspire confidence in the people
(a) This telegram was only received last night.