Friday, March 24, 1865

Goldsborough, North Carolina

HDQRS. MIL. DIV. OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsbourough, N. C., March 24, 1865.

I. Major-General Schofield, commanding Department of North Carolina, will, out of the troops now at his command, organize a force equivalent to two corps, or five divisions, and proceed to equip them in the most complete manner for field service. This force while operating with the other armies in the field will be styled the Center. For the present, General Schofield will post his command to hold Goldsborough, and cover the railroads back to Wilmington and Morehead City. He will also aid the railroad department with details to enable it to finish, in the shortest possible time, the two roads and equip them for service.

II. Colonel W. W. Wright, of the railroad department, will use extraordinary means, night and day, to complete the two railroads from Goldsborough back to Wilmington and Morehead City, and to equip them to the capacity of 300 tons per day of freight. He may pay any price for labor, call for details of soldiers, and draw rolling-stock from Savannah and Charleston, or any point within this command, and all commanding officers and quartermasters will give preference to the shipment of such stock over that of any other work whatever not involving life. The work of these railroads is limited and restricted to the transportation, in the order following, army stores: First, ammunition, second, food for men; third, clothing for men; fourth, grain for animals; fifth, camp and garrison equipage; sixth, hay or long forage- until there is an accumulation of supplies at Goldsborough enough to fill the wagons of the army. No officer, soldier, or citizen, or any private stores whatever will be carried on the up trips, unless it be mail matter, and officers or courier bearing orders for army headquarters, and these not to exceed one car-load per day. All else must march or use horses and wagons from the saltwater to Goldsborough until the army is thoroughly clothed and equipped. Return cars may load according to the discretion of the quartermaster in charge, provided there be no delay. To facilitate the completion of these roads, Colonel Poe will cause the First Michigan Engineers to work back toward new Berne. General Howard will cause to be built the railroad bridge over Neuse near Goldsborough, General Slocum the wagon road bridge on the Mount Olive road, and General Schofield the railroad bridge over Northeast Branch near Wilmington, leaving Colonel Wright with his working parties to look after the laying and ballasting the track and getting the cars in motion.

III. The chief quartermaster and commissary of the army in the field, Generals Easton and Beckwith, will repair at once to Goldsborough, and there control the movement of supplies according to the necessities of the army and orders issued at the general headquarters.

IV. The Right Wing of the army will group to the front and right of
Goldsborough, looking north; the Left Wing in front and left of Goldsborough; the Center in Goldsborough, with detachments to cover the railroad to the rear. The cavalry will be posted at or near Mount Olive Station. All will send forging parties into the country, being careful to have them strong and well guarded.

By order of Major General W. T. Sherman:
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. MIL. DIV. OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsborough, N. C., March 24, 1865.

I. Brevet Brigadier-General Dodge, chief quartermaster Department of North Carolina, will, with all possible dispatch, procure from Charleston and Savannah all the railroad rolling- stock that will be required to put the Wilmington and Goldsborough Railroad in working order to the required capacity.

II. To facilitate General Dodge in this work he is authorized to make use of any ships he may deem necessary for transporting such stock, and all commanding officers at Savannah, Charleston, and Wilmington will assist him to any degree he may require.

III. Brevet Brigadier-General Easton, chief quartermaster Military Division of the Mississippi, will furnish General Dodge a suitable steamer to proceed at once to the execution of his orders.

IV. Captain Justin Hodge, assistant quartermaster, U. S. Volunteers, is hereby relieved from duty with Major General H. W. Slocum, commanding Left Wing, and will report to Brevet Brigadier- General Dodge, chief quartermaster Department of North Carolina, for orders.

V. To facilitate operations of refitting and reorganization, army commanders will establish an office at Wilmington or New Berne, to be in charge of a staff officer, with instructions to receive and dispatch couriers and soldiers joining their commands, and such other instructions as may be deemed desirable.

VI. The quartermasters at Wilmington and New Berne will give officers assigned to duty the virtue of this order all the assistance necessary for office rooms, &c.

By order of Major General W. T. Sherman:
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant- Adjutant-General.


Major- General HOWARD, Commanding Right Wing:
GENERAL: A dispatch received from Colonel Garber states that the trains of the Fifteenth and Seventeenth Corps sent to Kinston are returning loaded with subsistence, and some clothing, &c. He says if trains are kept moving in regularity from the command to that point he can keep the army supplied from the stores that are arriving there by water. The general- in- chief suggests that you keep your spare wagons moving accordingly. Colonel Garber will need some 400 contrabands for loading trains and unloading vessels, and with the next train you send down you should send some to him.
Respectfully, &c.,
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant- Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OFTHE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsborough, N. C., March 24, 1865

General EASTON, Chief Quartermaster, Kinston Bridge:
You will not allow transportation on either railroad toward the army, excepting couriers under orders and staff officers bearing dispatches. Direct all officers and men to Wilmington, where they will collect in parties of not less than 500, and there from march to their commands.
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.
KINSTON, N. C., March 24, 1865

General Dodge Writes:

Major General W. T. SHERMAN, Commanding ilitary Division of the Mississippi:
I have seen Colonel Wright and explained to him your orders. He says it is they only way to supply your army. He desires me to get engines and cars four feet eight and one-half inch guage. I will send the necessary orders to my officers at Wilmington to push the work on the railroad with all possible dispatch, and proceed with steamer North and procure the stock for the road at once. Colonel Wright will be at Goldsborough with the train during the night.
G. S. DODGE, Brevet Brigadier- General and Quartermaster.

General DODGE, Quartermaster, Morehead City:
Your dispatch received. Tell General Easton to unload and dispatch vessels North as fast as possible, and proceed with all speed to General Grant and he will order the cars and locomotives from Norfolk and elsewhere. Lieutenant Dunn will be down tonight before daylight with dispatches for General Grant. Wait and take him along with you. Remember how valuable time is. We can bring up daily supplies enough, but to move I must have enough ahead to fill the wagons.
W. T. SHERMAN, Major-General.

Quartermaster Graber Writes:

KINSTON, March 24, 1865. Major L. M. DAYTON,
Assistant Adjutant-General, General Sherman’s Headquarters:
I have loaded and dispatched trains of Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Seventeenth Corps. Twentieth Corps train now loading. More than five days’ subsistence, and shoes, socks, shirts, and pants to make the men comfortable have been forwarded. Supplies of clothing, camp and garrison equipage come freely by water. General Easton has ten large barges, six steam tugs, and a dozen schooners. The railroad will not be available for several days. I will remain here a day or two, or longer if necessary, and have all the trains sent from the font loaded and sent out without delay. Send 300 or 400 contrabands to work at unloading boats and cars. If the wagon trains are kept moving steadily the army can be refitted before the railroad to Goldsborough can be used to advantage.

M. C. GARBER, Colonel and Chief Quartermaster.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsborough, N. C., March 24, 1865.

Colonel GARBER, Quartermaster, Kinston:
Your telegram in reference to forwarding supplies is received, and is exceedingly satisfactory. Go on as you have, dispatching trains sent you. More will be sent, which you can load and send out to us. Gangs of laborers will be sent you by the next train.

The water transportation will be kept in use.
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant- General.

The Army is Entrenching:

Rouse’s plantation, N. C., March 24, 1865.

I. The division being now permanently encamped, the troops will be governed accordingly. A good substantial line of works, with abatis in front, will be erected tomorrow along the entire front of the line, brigade commanders selecting the high ridge ground in their respective fronts and extending their works so as to cover their front when formed in single line. The pioneers will construct an embrasure battery for four guns on the ground as now occupied by the Twelfth Wisconsin Battery, the embrasures opening two direct to the front, and the remaining two covering in the direction of the flanks. The regular camps will be established, the regulation limits being assigned to each regiment, and care will be taken after the camps are once formed to have them cleanly policed each day, and all refuse matter carried off and buried. Sinks will be dug in front of each regiment, and the men will be required to invariably make proper use of them, no offal being permitted in the vicinity of the camps. The men will at once be set to work thoroughly cleaning their arms and accouterments, aiming to have them in the very best condition in the shortest possible time, as drills, inspections, &c., will be ordered as soon as the encampment is well established. The attention of brigade and regimental commanders is also called to the fact that the troops are not wearing the hair as ordered by regulations. Each enlisted man will be required to have his hair cut as prescribed.
By order of Bvt. Major General C. R. Woods:
FRED. H. WILSON, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
P. S. – There will be no ditch made inside the works, but one will extend along the entire front. The earth taken out will be used to strengthen the emabankment.

Kilpatrick Writes:

HEADQUARTERMS CAVALRY COMMAND, In the Field, Mount Olive, N. C., March 24, 1865

Major General W. T. SHERMAN, Commanding Military Division of the Mississippi:
GENERAL: I have arrived at Mount Olive. The country is full of forage. General Atkins, with his brigade, is at Clinton, gathering in supplies from the country to bring to this point. I have three mills in successful operation; intend to grind corn on the cob for my animals; corn meal and flour for my men. A train of cars was here day before yesterday; none of my people saw it. Please have an engine and such cars as can be found to carry away my wounded and suplus stores, and to take down my commissary of subsistence and quartemaster to Wilmington for supplies. I understand that the Seventh Ohio and several other regiments of cavalry are with Major-General Schofield.
In that case, I respectfully request that the Thirteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry be ordered to report to me as soon as possible. I wish to get my command in hand and make it effective. I shall make requisitions as soon as possible for horse equipments direct upon Lieutenant-General Grant’s ordnance officer, and send them forward for approval at your headquarters. Captain Hayes, of my staff, who brings you this dispatch, will be able to answer all questions and bring any instructions you may have for me.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. KIPATRICK, Brevet Major- General, Commanding Cavalry.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsborough, N. C., March 24, 1865

General KILPATRTICK, Commanding Cavalry:
Yours of this date is received, and he is much gratified that your command is in such good condition as to forage. Secure all you can. General Terry’s command will be posted at Faison’s and must have use of the railroad to supply it. All arrangements possible are bing made to the end that all troops shall be well supplied. I inclose an order of this date which will give you a complete understanding of the matter. At present there is a good supply of subsistence, clothing, &c., at Kinston, and if you will send your spare wagons there with the proper staff officers, Colonel Garber, acting chief quartermaster, will give you loads and all supplies that can be furnished. There is also a quantity of mail for the army there. I am, with respect, &.,
L. M. DAYTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, Goldsborough, N. C., March 24, 1865

To His Excellency FREDERICK F. LOW, Governor of California:
DEAR SIR: It gave me great pleasure on my arrival here yesterday to receive your letter of January 2, and I shall convey to the army the thanks of the people of California by the very language in which you have so well expressed them. I do not believe a body of men ever existed who were inspired by nobler impulses or a higher cause than they who compose this army, and yet I know that each individual of it will feel a new pride when he is assured that far off on the golden coast of the Pacific, hundreds of thousands of our fellow citizens have hailed our progress through this land whose inhabitants had well nigh brought our Government to ruin and infamy. I think when the tidings reach you of our more recent march from Savannah to Goldsborough you will find it a fit sequel to the Atlanta campaign, and we shall spare no efforts to make it also the precursor of yet another, which we pray may be final. Accept my personal thanks, and know that it was in California we learned the art of making long journeys with safety, to endure privations with cheerfulness, and to thrive under the most adverse circumstances, and these have enabled us to make strides in war which may seem gigantic to the uninitiated. I bid you all to be of good cheer, for there are plenty of brave men still left who are determined that the sun, as he daily reviews our continent fom the Chesapeake to San Francisco Bay, shall see a united people, and not a bundle of quarreling factions.
I am, with great respect, your friend and servant,
W. T. SHERMAN, Major- General, U. S. Army.

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