War of the Rebellion: Serial 040 Page 0641 Chapter XXXVII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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HEADQUARTERS, February 24, 1863.

General R. E. LEE, Commanding, &c.:

GENERAL: Your letter in reference to recommendation of officers of artillery for promotion is received. The names proposed by you are the best probably in the command. They are certainly among the best. All the captains of the Washington Artillery are superior officers. I think it probable, therefore, that the senior should be the one who is promoted. I would prefer that the officer selected from that command should not be nominated until I can learn from Colonel Walton who shall be promoted.

I remain, with, respect,

JAMES LONGSTREET,

Lieutenant-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS ANDERSON'S DIVISION, Near Fredericksburg, Va., February 24, 1863.

Major W. H. TAYLOR,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Hdqrs. Army of Northern Virginia:

MAJOR: I have the honor to report that on yesterday General Wright sent his assistant adjutant-general, Captain [V. J. B.] Girardey, across the river, at United States Ford, to examine the country opposite.

The captain returned last night, having carefully executed his instructions, and reports the enemy altogether removed from that neighborhood. Citizens informed him that they had been moving for some time past and had gone to Aquia Creek.

The river was swimming in the deepest part of the channel.

I am, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

R. H. ANDERSON,

Major-General, Commanding Division.

WAR DEPARTMENT, C. S. A., Richmond, Va., February 26, 1863.

General R. E. LEE, Commanding, &c.:

GENERAL: The well-ascertained sentiment of the people in the Valley of Virginia, concurring with the best judgment I can from in relation to the operations of General W. E. Jones in that region, constrains me to request that he may be relieved from his command there, and that General Fitzhugh Lee be substituted in his stead.

Whether in effecting this object it may be most judicious merely to exchange these generals, or whether and what change in the distribution of troops shall accompany the substitution of General F. Lee to the command, are questions which are committed with confidence to your superior knowledge and judgment as to the circumstances of your army and their respective commands; but it is the decided wish of the Department that the change of the command in the Valley should be made with as little delay as may be consistent with your conviction of the practicability of such movement of troops as you may deem advisable.

With high esteem, most respectfully, yours,

J. A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War.

41 R R-VOL XXV, PT II