Headquarters, August 4, 1862

Hon. George W. Randolph,

Secretary of War:


General: I am very reluctant to spare any troops from here at this time while from every quarter the enemy is congregating around us. Still De Gournay’s battalion may be of more service at Port Hudson than here, and we must take the risk. It had better, therefore, be sent if men cannot be obtained there. General Loring has been very important for re-enforcements, but I have not been able to see that he is seriously threatened, or how he could use them unless he had sufficient force to drive the enemy from the Kanawha Valley. Starke’s regiment—raised in that country and could probably be recruited there—had better be sent if re-enforcements are necessary. The North Carolina regiments, though not as serviceable, could then be brought here. Col. J. Lucius Davis was written to on the 30th ultimo, through the post-office in Richmond, stating that the Special Order, No._, directing him to report to General Loring, was suspended. I have not heard from him, but Colonel Chilton saw him in the city yesterday, and I learn he was seen there today. I have sent him an order to report in person to me. If any one in the Adjutant-General’s Office can see him it had better be done, as I do not know where to find him.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R E Lee,





Source: The War of the Rebellion, Series 1, Volume 11, Part 3, pp. 663-664

Transcribed by Colin Woodward, 2019 January 3