War of the Rebellion: Serial 045 Page 0758 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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As Lee has fallen back, and as your militia here is getting mutinous in its resolves, I think you had better call back all your troops unless the department chooses to put this in your command, as it should do. I have no doubt but that I rank General Lockwood, and if I do you might, by a messenger direct to Meade, set things to rights at once; but still I don't think "le jeu vaut la chandelle, " and my present position is simply insupportable, because I cannot give a single order that I am certain I have the power to force the execution of. Truly, yours,

WM. F. SMITH.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SUSQEHANNA, Chambersburg, July 23, 1863.

Brigadier General William F. Smith,

Commanding at Hagerstown:

GENERAL: I wish you to hold on for the present. I supposed that General Schenck had settled the matter with his troops. I will immediately telegraph him about it. As regards the mutinous state of the men of [Emlen] Franklin's command, if nothing can be done with them or their colonels, you will have to fall back toward Greencastle. Please write me particularly about it; where the difficulty lies, &c. Above all things, we want to avoid a mutiny; and if, upon the receipt of this, from your knowledge, as above stated, it is eminently expedient to fall back, do so. In that case I would like you to remain for awhile at Hagerstown, until Kelley is over, and gotten the country south of the Potomac in his possession. Respectfully,

D. N. COUCH,

Major-General.

CHERRY RUN, VA., July 23, 1863-8 a. m. (Received 5. 50 p. m.)

General CULLUM,

Chief of Staff:

My cavalry drove in the enemy's pickets at McCoy's Ferry and North Mountain yesterday. Deserters report that Ewell's corps occupied Hedgesville a few hours after we left on Monday night, but, finding I had retreated, fell back to Martinsburg. I have sent a strong cavalry scout this morning toward Hedgesville, to learn the strength and position of the enemy. Quite a number of deserters come in daily; belong mostly to Hampton's brigade, from Georgia and South Carolina, and generally so ignorant that little reliable information can be obtained from them.

B. F. KELLEY,

Brigadier-General.

CHERRY RUN, VA., July 23, 1863. (Received 10. 10 p. m.)

Brigadier General G. W. CULLUM,

Chief of Staff, Washington, D. C.:

My cavalry expedition has just returned from Hedgesville and North Mountain, and report that the enemy have retreated, and are