Today in History:

88 Series I Volume XXXIII- Serial 60 - New Berne

Page 88 OPERATIONS IN N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XLV.

[Inclosure Numbers 5.]

NEWPORT BARRACKS, N. C., February 2, 1864- 8 p. m.

Major-General WHITINK, Commanding, Willmington:

GENERAL: After several slight skirmishes, beginning about 12 o'clock to-day 9 miles from this point, we had quite a serious engagement from 4 to 6 o'clock. Terminated by driving the enemy over Newport River. They burnt their barracks and most of their stores. Our loss is not very severe, though I am unable to say what it is. Lieutenant Muse, of Captain Harris's company of cavalry, was killed, and Captain Leith, of the Seventeenth, supposed to be mortally wounded. We have some prisoners, but most of the enemy escaped. The fort at this place is quite strong. On account of my entire ignorance of the movements about New Berne I felt unwilling to risk the safety of my command, and so ordered the bridge (railroad) to be burnt. The county bridge, at the request of Colonel Jackson, I have left for the present. There are now only a few organized commands on this point of land between. Newport River and the sound. I shall send early in the morning to Morehead City and occupy it. I am very much embarrassed to know what to do on account of my entire ignorance of the state of affairs at New Berne. I have heard from General Barton only once, of which I wrote to you before. Lieutenant Fairly has been of very great service to me.

I am, general, yours, respectfully,



Since writing the above the information I have received leads me to believe I ought to fall back unless I hear from General Lee.

[Inclosure Numbers 6.]


February 2, 1864-9. 30 p. m.

General BARTON, or


GENERAL: We drove the enemy from this place just at dusk this evening. I am at a loss to know what to do now, as I have heard nothing from your or from New Berne. In this state of my information I deem it best to burn the railroad bridge. Please ask General Lee or General Pickett to give me some instructions at once. You know my rear is all exposed to an attack from New Berne the moment you leave it open. Please let me hear from you or the general in command of the forces around New Berne.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,



[Inclosure Numbers 7.]

(Received Newport Barracks, 2. 30 a. m., February 3.)

[Brigadier General J. G. MARTIN:]

GENERAL: My part of the expedition has failed; has accomplished very little, and I now leave to join main body. There is, therefore, no force between you and New Berne. I am disappointed in not hearing from you to-day. Will send your other courier from Pollocksville. Everything has gone well across the Trent.

Very respectfully, yours, &c.,

S. M. B.

Page 88 OPERATIONS IN N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XLV.