O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLII/3 [S# 89]
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN
SOUTHEASTERN VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA, FROM OCTOBER 1, 1864, TO
DECEMBER 31, 1864.--# 4
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF RICHMOND,
November 5, 1864.
General R H. CHILTON,
Inspector-General C. S. Army:
GENERAL: I beg to submit the following in lieu of the
regular monthly inspection report, which it has so far been impossible
to prepare owing to the newness of the greater portion of the command
and its consequent deficiencies in organization and system. A reason
even more powerful has been the constant and severe labor which the
troops have been called upon to perform in erecting fortifications.
General Barton's brigade is composed at present of the Eighteenth
Virginia Battalion Heavy Artillery (properly of Colonel Pemberton's
command), Twenty-fifth Virginia Battalion Infantry (City Battalion),
<ar89_1203> First Battalion Virginia Reserves, Third Battalion Virginia
Reserves, Fourth Battalion Virginia Reserves, Eighteenth Georgia
Battalion Heavy Artillery (temporarily in this department by order from
headquarters Department of Northern Virginia). These troops have an
aggregate present of 1,509. General G. W. C. Lee's brigade consists of
the Local Defense Troops, the Second Virginia Battalion Reserves, and
the Tenth Virginia Battalion Heavy Artillery, with aggregate present of
1,763. Johnson's (Tennessee) brigade (Col. J. M. Hughs commanding),
reports an effective present of 481; aggregate present, 704.
Lieutenant-Colonel Pemberton's command (the Artillery Defenses) has
present effective, 1,304; aggregate present, 1,488. The brigades of
Generals Barton and Lee and Colonel Hughs have been so constantly
occupied with work and picket duty as to be unable to pay much attention
to police of camp or daily drills. The few troops who compose Hughs'
brigade are pretty well drilled, as are the heavy artillery battalions,
but the reserves in particular need instructions, not being acquainted
with even the school of the company, so far as I have seen. They are now
drilled daily as much as practicable. Sinks have been dug and the inert
required to use them. The sinks of General Lee's command being placed in
front his works, the ground in the neighborhood of his camps is quite
clean. Along General Barton's line the men are now thinly scattered in
works, which were at one time occupied by a considerably larger force.
They were unable until very lately to complete the works and to clean up
the whole extent of ground left dirty by the troops before them. Hence
the police of this part of the line is not good, though it soon will be.
Very few depredations have been complained of, the chief reason of which
is that the ground was pretty well stripped before these troops occupied
it. The health of the command is good, except that of the reserves, many
of whom are poorly clad. Several desertions took place from the
mechanics among the Local Defense Troops during the first half of the
month, the men being frightened by the orders revoking details and
fearing that they would be put permanently in the field. These have now
ceased. Six or seven of the Castle Thunder battalion have deserted to
the enemy. With these exceptions the morale of the troops has
been fine, so far I could ascertain. Their arms are well kept and due
precaution taken to prevent the waste of ammunition. The heavy artillery
along the intermediate line proper keep their camps and arms in very
good order, being enabled to do so easily by the stationary nature of
their duty. General Gary's cavalry brigade is temporarily under General
Longstreet's command. I hope by the 15th of this month to make a
complete and comparatively satisfactory report.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major and Assistant Inspector-General.