though General Beauregard
has no recollection of the fact; but, by whomsoever delivered to the President
, it certainly is the only trustworthy evidence bearing upon the subject.
What Colonel Melton
is alleged to have verbally added to General Beauregard
's letter—namely, ‘that upon further examination he found his forces sufficient, and that his operations, therefore, did not depend upon making a junction with Whiting
’—is in such direct contradiction to all of General Beauregard
's views and efforts at the time, to his report of the battle, and to the whole contents of the letter itself, as to be unworthy of serious attention.
's reasons for modifying his order to General Whiting
were given in that letter to the President
; and therein alone—not in any outside gossip—should General Beauregard
's views, opinions, and intentions be looked for, and there only does their expression really exist.
In corroboration of the foregoing statement are the telegrams, ten or twelve in number, sent by General Beauregard
to General Whiting
, between the 14th and 17th of May, showing conclusively that the former never wavered in his desire to secure the latter's co-operation before the expected attack upon Butler
But we have additional proof in the telegram from General Beauregard
to General Bragg
, dated May 15th, 1864 (the day referred to by Mr. Davis
), which reads as follows:
‘I have already sent General Whiting his instructions to co-operate with me. Please telegraph him to follow them as delivered by Colonel Logan.
Yours may conflict with mine.’
The fact of General Beauregard
's insisting so much upon the co-operation of General Whiting
's forces, and the fear that orders from Richmond
might clash with his own, leave no doubt as to his opinion that Whiting
's presence was necessary to the success of his plan.
As General (then Colonel
's name has been mentioned in connection with this incident, we quote a passage from a letter written by him to General Beauregard
, dated Richmond, Va.
, January, 2d, 1882:1
‘During the day of May 15th Colonel Samuel Melton, acting A. A. G., notified me that you desired me to take your written and verbal instructions to General Whiting, at his headquarters, near Petersburg, as you intended ’