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[509] have said that, if you can increase the army, it should be done; if you cannot, nothing is left for us but to struggle manfully with such means as the Government can furnish.

I beg you to consider, in connection with affairs in this department, that I had not only to organize, but to provide means of transportation and supplies of all sorts for an army. The artillery is not yet equipped. All of Lieutenant-General Pemberton's supplies were, of course, with his troops about Vicksburg and Port Hudson.

I found myself, therefore, without subsistence, stores, ammunition, or the means of conveying those indispensables. It has proved more difficult to collect wagons and provisions than I had expected. We have not yet the means of operating for more than four days away from the railroads. That to Vicksburg is destroyed.

We draw our provisions from the northern part of the State. The protection of that country employs about twenty-five hundred irregular cavalry. It is much too small. I am endeavoring to increase it by calling for volunteers, but am by no means sanguine as to the result.

Most respectfully, Your obedient servant, J. E. Johnston, General.

Richmond, Virginia, June 5, 1863.
General. E. Johnston:
I regret my inability to promise more troops, as we have drained resources, even to the danger of several points. You know best concerning General Bragg's army, but I fear to withdraw more. We are too far outnumbered in Virginia to spare any. You must rely on what you have, and the irregular forces Mississippi can afford. Your judgment and skill are fully relied on, but I venture the suggestion that, to relieve Vicksburg, speedy action is essential. With the facilities and resources of the enemy, time works against us.

(Signed) J. A. Seddon, Secretary of War.

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