ready to move at a moment's warning. As they may make a feint upon Macon in order to draw our troops in that direction, it is of course advisable to look sharply to this and not have the small re-enforcements under my command misdirected. Therefore, in case they appear off that fort please give me immediate notice, with your opinion as to their designs.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. C. GATLIN,
ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, Numbers 196.
Richmond, October 30, 1861.
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X. The following cavalry companies, viz, Captain Tayloe's Alabama Volunteers and Captain Shannon's South Carolina Volunteers, will proceed by route march to Manassas, Va., and report to General J. E. Johnston, commanding Department of Northern Virginia. The companies will be prepared to move on Saturday, the 2nd proximo. Captain Wilson's company Mississippi Volunteers will form part of the Mississippi battalion encamped near this city.
By command of the Secretary of War:
WINCHESTER, October 30, 1861.
Honorable R. M. T. HUNTER, Secretary of State:
DEAR SIR: The subject upon which I address you, I am well aware, does not fall within the range of your official duties, but it is one in which, as a citizen of Virginia, you cannot fail to feel a deep interest, and as I am wholly unknown to either the President
of Secretary of War I am persuaded you will excuse me for bringing it to your attention, and leave it to you to present it to their consideration, if you shall deem it of sufficient importance to deserve it. The subject I allude to is the exposed condition of the border counties in this part of the State and the injurious consequences resulting to our cause in the withdrawal from it of the support of some of the best citizens from the apparent inability of our Government to afford them that protection which they think they have a right to demand. I have not overlooked the fact of the great and pressing necessity which has existed, and which I apprehend still exists, for the presence of large bodies of troops at other points, which it is absolutely essential to the maintenance of the common cause should be successfully defended at any and every hazard. Nor would I recommend the adoption of any course which, in the judgment of others better qualified to form an opinion, might be through to imperil the safety of the points alluded to; but if they can be made secure, and at the same time such a force could be spared as would afford protection to the counties bordering on the Upper Potomac, we should thereby secure the united support of these counties to our cause, which is in danger of being lost to us by a longer continuance of the perils of life and property to which they have already been so long exposed. The loyal people of the large and populous counties of Hampshire and Hardy especially have suffered severely for six months past in their persons and property from the presence within their limits of a military force of the enemy, which ha not only to heavy pecuniary losses, but to great danger to themselves and their