The Pres't being sick & very tired, Col. Stevens could not see him, but delivered my message to General Bragg with my request that the necessary order sh'd be issued at once, but he refused to do it, although mil'y adviser of the Pres't, without the orders of the latter & as he w'd not disturb him (!) he came to confer with me at D's b. where he arrived at about 6 h. A. M. After discussing my plan, which he agreed was the only one which might save Richard & the Conf'cy, he still refused to issue the necessary orders. I then said to him ‘Bragg circumstances have thrown the fate of the Conf'cy in y'r hands & mine, let us play our parts boldly & fearlessly! issue those orders & I'll carry them out to the best of my ability. I'll guarantee success!’ but he w'd not, saying that he w'd return at once to Richard & get the Pres't to issue them—about one hour after the latter arrived, & after a long conference, he refused to issue them, except as to Ransom's command, which came only on the morning of the 15th & the battle of D's b. was fought & won on the 16th—if General Whiting had obeyed my orders, which I sent him by three diff't couriers on the afternoon of the 15th we w'd nevertheless have captured or destroyed Butler's army. Bragg's last dispatch to Whiting could not have been dated before the 14th of May, for he only knew of my intended attack on the morning of that day. Fearful of interference from Richard in General Whiting's movement, I insisted as a part of my order to him, that he w'd obey no orders, from any source not passing through me. Such, General, are my recollections (distinct) of those events—which you will find in the No's. of the ‘Land We Love,’ or Baltimore ‘Southern Magazine’ in which they were published a few years since, numbers of which I sent you at the time. I regret that I have not a copy of Ransom's subterfuge in defence of Bragg or I w'd send it to you with pleasure, but you will probably find it in the back files of the Richard Whig, in which, I think, it was published, shortly after the Battle of Drury's bluff. With my kind regards to your family, & hoping that you may furnish Mr. Marrin with your recollections of that eventful period of our late war, I remain, Sincerely y'r friend Petersburg were also critical & glorious.
G. T. B.