General R. C. Gatlin, in command of the Southern Department of the Coast Defenses of north Carolina, together with his reply. These letters explain themselves, and the committee of safety will be greatly obliged if you will, as promptly as you conveniently can, bring the subject-matter of this correspondence to the attention of the proper authorities of the Government of the Confederate States.
Very truly, yours,
WM. A. WRIGHT.
[Inclosure Numbers 1.]
WILMINGTON, N. C., July 22, 1861.
General RICHARD C. GATLIN:
DEAR SIR: The undersigned, members of the committee of safety of the town of Wilmington, have been appointed a special committee of that body to inquire into the present condition of the defenses of the southern portion of the coast of North Carolina, and to make such representation of the matter referred to us to the Government of the Confederate States as will secure prompt attention to the same. The attention of the committee of safety has been directed to the subject of the coast defenses in this vicinity by reason of information received unofficially that all works intended for the protection of our coast had been suspended by order of the authorities of our State. We beg you will advise us as to the truth of the information on which the committee of safety has acted, and further, that you will inform us in detail as to the present condition of the different works which have been commenced for the defense of the coast and harbors in this portion of our State, andl also what additional works are deemed necessary for the purposes indicated.
WM. A. WRIGHT.
J. D. BELLAMY.
[Inclosure Numbers 2.]
HEADQUARTERS SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT,
COAST DEFENSES OF NORHT CAROLINA,
Wilmington, July 23, 1861.
Messrs. JOHN McRAE,
WILLIAM A. WRIGHT, and
JOHN D. BELLAMY,
Members of the Committee of Safety of the Town of Wilmington:
GENTLEMEN: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 22nd instant, and to reply as follows: On the 5th instant instructions were received from Raleigh directing all expenditures in this department to cease, so far as North Carolina is concerned, save as to the proper support of the troops. Accordingly, orders were issued directing all work to cease on the forts and batteries in this harbor and along the coat and the laborers discharged. There have been completed three batteries, viz: One on Oak Island, one on Zeek's Island, and one on Confederate Point; another on cofederate Point is in an unfinished state. The batteries yet to be erected, and which were recommended by Colonel Whiting, are three in number, viz: One at Reeves' Point, one at Price's Creek, and one at Old Brunswick. In addition to the above-mentioned works two other batteries should be erected without delay on the coast above Confederate Point light-one at the head of the sound and one two miles and a half from it and between it and the