the law, while their comrades are fighting the enmey. If the rascals went to work at home, one could understand the sympthy they meet with, but it is a notorious fact that they give themselves up to idleness and thieving, thus infliciting double injury upon their coutry.
The result of all this upon our regiments is demoralizing to an except you can scarcely conveive. The torrent of North Carolina blood shed in the battles of last summer whashed out the stain left upon the State by the defeats of Roanoke and New Berne, and I found her on my return highest among the hight. I regret to say that the suspicion cast upon her by the misconduct of a few unworthy sons has undone everything. I sympathize with every party in its efforts to arrest the first step of our Governor toward despotic power, adn even abuse of the Confederate Government I consider a matter of conparative indifference, though it had as well be left out, but I have no manner of sympathy with those who overlook their country in their opposition to a government or a party. I would rather see the whole State desolated as Virginia is than dishonored by a feeble effort to look back on its escape from the Yankee Sodom. I write this to you because you are the only person in the State having sufficient influence, as I think, to reform matters. It is absolutely necessary to bring the public opinion again to the condition of patiently and manfully meeting those trails which every people strggling for indeptendence must meet; and so far as they army is concerned, the best way to accomplish this to convince them that a man who meanly deserts them in the face of the enemy will be metat home with scorn and speedily returned to deserved punishment. I found in Duplin a company oranized for this express prupose, and there was consequently only one straggler in the county, and he hid in Holly Shelter Swamp. Cannot similar organizations be made in the rest of the States? The great majority of my brigade would shoot a deserter as quick as ke, but our place is here and not in the rear. unless somenthing of the sort is done I fear the conscript call will be extended to forty-five, which is unnecessary as well as unadvisable. I sent fifty men into Radolph tothing back all desertes, dead or alive, but I fear they will meet with poor succer until the citizens can be induced to take and active part in the matter. Nor can I spare men for such a purpose. If a strong arm is required I doubt not that General Hill will furnish the men, as we have nearly as many troops in North Carolina as the Yankees have, since the discharge of their two-year's. I assure you we need every man with his colors, if a peace is to be conquered this summer.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. JOHNSTON PETTIGREW,
HEADQUARTERS FIRST ARMY CORPS, Numbers 13.
Near Fredericksburg, May 23, 1863.
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II. Flags of truce will not be received unless they are sent by the commanding general of the enemy's army. Parties sending flags of truce to amek arrangemetns for surrender will be allowed five minutes to stack arms and surrender as prisoners of war. Bearers of other flags will be arrested and held as prisoners of war or as spies, as the circumstances may warrant.
By command of Lieutenant-General Longstreet:
G. M. SORREL,