some missaprehension prevailing about the troops assembled here in our North Carolina camp of instruction, and I ask permission to submit an explanation to correct any such if it exists. Under your direction, and in compliance with your requisition, I have established here a camp of instruction and made a call upon the State for her quota of five regiments, which has been handsomely responded to by the tender of more than 100 companies, besides filling up ten war regiments with new enlistments. These new regiments are daily arriving in camp of instruction for equipment, arms, and drill, and are classed into regiments in the order of their arrival, and that was as far as their organization had progressed when I reported the formation of four regiments, and three more would be formed in ten days. It was a mere paper organization; they were here in the camp of instruction, their field, officers partly chosen, and not yet present, the companies not clothed, equipped, or armed, and were reported as ready for the arms for drill. These arms were expected from the Confederate Government by previous engagement, both from the President and Secretary of War. When I saw a lot of amrs en route from Charleston to Richmond stopped accidentally at our depot, I supposed they were intended for our regiments, and forthwith telegraphed to Richmond and Goldsborough, where General Holmes' ordnance officer (who came after them) informed me there were no unarmed men, except a small portion who had lost their arms in the New Berne fight. I am forced to believe that these arms were taken from here to Goldsborough under some misapprehension, as I learned their only use there was to be exchanged with some regiments for an inferior arm, while here there were no arms of either kind. I am fully aware of the scarcity of arms, and the difficulty of procuring them, and would have silently acquiesced in the loss of these arms had not their removal to a post where they were not then wanted induced me to regard it as apprehension on the part of the Department. North Carolina will report her quota ready as soon as they are furnished with the indispensable requisite of arms. Her own arms have been exhausted by furnishing all of her own regiments with arms, and 13,000 stand to other troops in the service of the Confederacy, and I know of no reason why she should be slighted now in the way of arms. And believing this was done through some misapprehension, I trust her troops will be supplied from the first opportunity which may occur hereafter.
Most respectfully, yours,
HENRY T. CLARK.
Secretary of War for reply. General Lee for perusal, &c.
I would respectfully remark for the information of the Secretary of War that three regiments were ordered from Georgia to Goldsborough in addition to certain regiments ordered from that State to Tennessee and South Carolina. All these regiments were in camps of instruction in Georgia and ready for the field with the exception of arms. Arms for those ordered to Goldsborough were sent from Charleston via Charlotte, deemed the safer route after the occupation of New Berne by the enemy. Had it been known to me at the time that the North Carolina regiments were ready for service I should have preferred taking them
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