On February 22, 1865, General Joseph E. Johnston informed Robert E. Lee that it was too late for Lee to expect Johnston to consolidate the Confederate troops in the Carolinas and drive back William T. Sherman.
LINCOLNTON, N. C., February 22, 1865.
General R. E. LEE
It is too late to expect me to concentrate troops capable of driving back Sherman. The remnant of the Army of Tennessee is much divided. So are other troops. I will get information from General Beauregard as soon as practicable. Is any discretion allowed me? I have no staff.
J. E. JOHNSTON.