that he promises a more detailed report at some future time. Kinston, where he is now assembling his forces, is upon the Atlantic and North Carolina Railroad, about twenty miles from this place and some thirty-four miles from New Berne. I am not accurately informed of his strength, but presume it does not exceed 4,000 effective men. Radcliffe' and Clingman's regiments, with the two batteries from Wilmington, will increase it to about 6,000. This force will require an additional brigadier-general of experience and intelligence, who, I hope, will be assigned at once. The smallest estimate placed upon the force of the enemy at New Berne is 22,000. That is the number stated by a lieutenant thwo is now a prisoner in our hands. If it is expected that the railroad at this point is to be protected our forces must be largely increased to meet one so superior in numbers. I cannot urge this point too strongly, and hope that it will be speedily done. Doubltess the force now reassembling at Kinston has been somewhat demoralized by its late defeat, which might be cured by an early and large increase.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. C. GATLIN,
GOLDSBOROUGH, March 16, 1862.
General Branch's force consisted of over 4,000 men. They lost all their baggage. They require tents, camp kettles, mess pans, and axes. It will be impossible to restore order if these are not supplied and that without the least delay. A large number, probably the whole, are without greatcoasts or blankets. If you clothing officer can supply, please order them sent down immediately. I will go down to Kinston this morning.
R. C. GATLIN,
RAPPAHANNOCK, March 17, 1862.
His Excellency JEFFERSON DAVIS:
I am placing the troops south of the Rapidan to be able to communicate with Fredericksburg. Have been greatly delayed by the condition of the country and by the railroads. I hope that the First and Second Divisions will cross the Rapidan to-morrow.
J. E. JOHNSTON.
HEADQUARTERS AT MR. CLARK'S, Numbers 30.
Monday, March 17, 1862.
Colonel Thomas H. Taylor, of First Kentucky Regiment, is placed in command of the post at Orange Court-House, and invested with the power and authority of provost-marshal for the town and vicinity. Captain Desha, with an efficient guard of 200 men from the same regiment, is appointed assistant provost-marshal, and will, under instructions from Colonel Taylor, regulate the town. Major Crossland will take command of the remaining portion of the regiment. The provost-