Danville and Petersburg and Lynchburg, I have the honor to repressent through you to the commanding general the great necessity for the immediate adoption of a proper system of defenses at the different necessary points on the lines indicated, and that concert of action on tthe part of officers commanding detachments for their defense is most desirable and should be attained. At the present time the various detachments guarding these routes are commanded by colonels, majors, and captains, priincipally of the Sstate Reserves, each officer preparing for the protection of his position according to his own judgment, consequently not having in view any regular system of defense or mutual understanding, both so essential should an emergency arise. In the present state of affairs should one or more of the bridges along these lines be destroyed by a riading party of the enemy it would require at least twelve and in some cases twenty-four hours to receive notification of the fact and a like period would have to elapse before the threatened point could be properly re-enforced. Besides, the interruption of railroad communication would prove at this time a sad inconvenience. In view of these facts I have the honor to recommend and request that an officer with the rank of brigadier-general be ordered to report to me to superintend the defenses and prottect the lines of railroad before mentioned. His headquarters should be at Burkeville, the junction of the two roads, where, with a portion of his command, he could re-enforce any threatened point rapidly and probably be able to foil any attempt on the part of the enemy looking to their destruction.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
G. T. BEAUREGARD,
HANCOCK'S, June 21, 1864.
Your dispatch received concerning Cooke's brigade. He is now at crosses the railroad. Would it not be shorter and quicker should Cooke move to march directly to the pontoon bridge which crosses at Chaffin's? I have sent strong scouting parties out to ascertain whether the enemy are moving from my front, 12.12 p. m.
G. E. PICKETT,
HANCOCK'S HOUSE, June 21, 1864.
Colonel W. H. TAYLOR:
From General G. W. C. Lee's telegram I judge he does not stand in neede of any more troops than Cooke's brigade. Have received no answer, however, from him. Scouts along my line report no changes in enemy's line.
G. E. PICKETT,
HANCOCK'S HOUSE, June 21, 1864-10.50 a. m.
Signal officer reports enemy's infantry crossing by pontoon bridge to sonth side of Appomattox. About one division has crossed and more going over. My scouts report no withdrawal from my front. Shall push my inquiries. These troops may be re-enforcements from Bermuda Hundred.
G. E. PICKETT.