HEADQUARTERS FIRST ARMY CORPS,
April 1, 1865.
Major General J. B. KERSHAW,
Commanding Division, &c.:
General Lee has sent over for Field's division to come to Petersburg and for General Longstreet to come with it. General Ewell will bring out his Local troops to take the place of Field's division. General Ewell will be at these headquarters and have temporary command of the line. Field's troops will move off at once, leaving his pickets in line until relieved by General Ewell and General Gary. General Gary has been ordered to report to you with his dismounted men, to relieve the pickets of Field's two right brigades. When he reports will you see that he relieves them as soon as possible, so that they may rejoin their command. Until General Ewell's troops come out you and Gary will have to keep a lookout for the line left vacantly by Field. His pickets will remain along the whole front until General Ewell's troops are in line, and you will just have to look after the main line. You need not send your staff wagons to-morrow to Colonel Johnston, but will send the eight mules to the dam, where the negroes will be put to work.
WAR DEPARTMENT, C. S. A., ADJUTANT AND INSPECTOR-GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Richmond, Va., April 1, 1865-7.30 p. m.
Lieutenant General R. S. EWELL:
GENERAL: The Secretary of War directs that the Local troops be ordered out at once to take the place of a part of General Longstreet's command, removed to the south side of James River to-night. The different bureaus have been notified of the order.*
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN W. RIELY,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
April 1, 1865.
Lieutenant General R. S. EWELL,
GENERAL: I send you a letter+ received to-day which I think contains some valuable and important suggestions. I do not think I could get the general to act upon it unless the matters came to him officially, but I think the attention of the governor should be called to it and some action taken, at least to avert the evils likely to attend the possible withdrawal of our army, even if measures be not taken to put the negroes and stragglers into the ranks. The general is much occupied now, and I think those on the ground can devise the best means to meet the difficulties and dangers pointed out by the writer. You are aware that many outrages have been committed under circumstances like those referred to in this letter, and I think measures can-not be taken too soon to prevent them. I leave the matter to you
*See circular, p. 1370.