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“ [366] we will certainly whip the enemy again.” He then told me that when he left Wilmington, Bragg was looking for a place to fall back upon. I tendered him the command, although he had come into the fort without orders and unarmed; he refused it, saying he would advise and counsel with me, but would leave me to conduct the defense of my fort. General Bragg adds:

The fighting done was, no doubt, by the veterans who had reached the fort from Hoke's command. To my mind this is a clear solution of the whole thing.

This reflection upon my heroic garrison, forces me to state, what otherwise, I would leave unsaid, and that is, that with the exception of some brave officers and about forty men, under Captain Carson, the senior officer, the two South Carolina regiments (which was all of Hoke's command which reached me) failed to respond to my order to double quick to the left salient, although appealed to by their officers. They were somewhat excusable, for they had just passed through a severe fire in reaching the fort, and hardly recovered their breath after a double quick of a mile through the sand, and they afterwards, I was told, came out and fought gallantly. And now for the last clause in this letter.

General Bragg says:

Blockade running has cured itself. * * All, even to the privates, were more or less interested in the business. Under an arrangment with General Whiting, I learn salvage was regularly allowed on all property saved from wrecks, which was not stolen, and every vessel arriving made certain contributions of luxuries, whiskey being the principal.

I can only speak for my own garrison; but as this charge is false in regard to it, I take it for granted it is untrue as to all. I know of no officer or private in my command who was interested in blockade running. Of the very many captains who came in and went out under the protection of my guns, all will testify that I not only never asked, but refused to allow cotton or any articles of merchandise to be carried for me. Without my knowledge or consent, unknown parties sent out ten bales of cotton in my name and notified me, through Trenholm & Co., that they were in Liverpool, subject to my order. I immediately ordered them sold, and the proceeds to be invested in two one hundred and thirty-pounder Whitworth rifles, and ammunition for Fort Fisher. The order was executed. Some of the ammunition arrived, but the guns never got nearer than Nassau.

Many vessels which were beached to save them from capture were

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Braxton Bragg (3)
Robert F. Hoke (2)
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