War of the Rebellion: Serial 109 Page 0775 Chapter LXIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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further, that nearly all the Savannah infantry and much of the artillery are now drawn here to defend Charleston, and would therefore be cut off in an amergency from the former city, which would fall an easy prey to a serious attack, unless I were able to re-enforce its present garrison. I am obliged to depend on my cavalry to guard and prevent the interruption of my communications. I beg to assure the War Department I cannot spare a cavalry soldier from my department. Further, the most important arsenal and powder-works of the country at Augusta, it should be rembered, may be reached by a march of eighty miles from Pocotaligo or Coosawhatchie by a cavalry force quietly colelcted at Port Royal and (with the enemy's transportation resources) suddenly thrown on the mainland. Only by a strong force concentrated with celerity could such an attempt be successfully circumvented. To reduce my cavalry, therefore, I must earnestly urge, will be to invite disaster.


General, Commanding.


November 10, 1863.

Respectfully submitted to the Secretary of War.


Assistant Adjutant-General.

[Sixth indorsement.]


Let me know the number of cavalry in the South Carolina Department (General Beauregard's entire department) by the last returns. You were under the impression in our last conversation that it was considerably larger than General B[eauregard] supposes.


Secretary of War.


OCTOBER 10, 1863-9 a. m.

[General R. E. LEE:]

GENERAL: I am now within a mile of James city, on the Russell's Ford road. I found a regiment of infantry as well as cavalry at Bethsaida Church, which by a flank movement I attacked and scattered and routed, capturing many prisoners. The infantry belonged to the Third Corps. I have driven the enemy to the immediate vicinity of James City, where I understand Kilpatrick's division is still encamped. I have a good position and see some dispositions as if to attack me. I shall endeavor to hold my present position until I am satisfied that the rear of the main column is well clear of this road, and is marching abreast of me, when I shall flank around James city. I have established a picket at William Hill's, which is on my route and is opposite Garr's on yours. I think our movement has cleared the top of Throughfare Mountain of Yankees, but I am just sending a party to take possession. Send me word at Hill's when Rodes reaches Garr's. Prisoners say Second Division, Third Corps, is at James City. As I close all is quiet.

Most respectfully,



The prisoners brought in thus far amount to 86 enlisted men, 2 surgeons, 1 captain, 1 lieutenant.