HEADQUARTERS VIRGINIA FORCES,
Richmond, Va., May 8, 1861.
Colonel John B. Magruder, of the Provisional Army of Virginia, is assigned to the command of the Virginia forces in and about this city. No will execute the duties assigned to his predecessor by General Orders, Numbers 3, current series. Colonel Magruder will select from his command a suitable officer to perform the duties of assistant adjutant-general.
By order of Major-General Lee:
R. S. GARNETT,
HEADQUARTERS POTOMAC DEPARTMENT,
Culpeper Court-House, Va., May 8, 1861.
Colonel R. S. GARNETT:
SIR: In accordance with orders received from the general-in-chief, to post at Manassas Junction sufficient force to defend that point against any attack likely to be made against it by troops from Washington, I immediately ordered the Powhatan troops of cavalry to march from this place this morning, to join Captain J. S. Green's company, now at Amissville, Rappahannock County, and to proceed together to Manassas Junction, where there are two (raw, undrilled, un uniformed, and armed with the altered musket) Irish companies, lately sent out from Alexandria, and which I had ordered to be held and drilled at Manassas Junction. We will endeavor to use these companies. I have also ordered one section (two pieces) of Captain Kemper's artillery, (the only part of his battery at all available as foot artillery, and that rendered available by doubling upon the two pieces the horses and ammunition he had for the four pieces), which I shall also take along to the same point. the powhatan troop of cavalry and the section of artillery are absolutely all of the force at all available at this time at this place. I have telegraphed back to Charlottesville for two companies of riflemen to be dispatched to this point, and learn from Lieutenant-Colonel Fry that I will get but one, and that not until this evening.
Looking to Lychburg, I learn that the armed companies of that place are now in Richmond, under Colonel Garland. If so, I trust, sir, they will be immediately dispatched to the command at Manassas.
We have no ammunition of any kind, except the limited supply sent forward to Alexandria. I shall gather in as fast as possible the armed companies that have not been mustered into the service throughout my department (if any there be desires those referred to), and concentrate them here at Manassas and Alexandria, as occasion may require.
From three to five thousand muskets or rifles should be immediately forwarded to this point for the use of this command; thence to be drawn for arming companies, as mustered into service. Some place will be provided as a magazine at this point. The powder, balls, munitions, equipments, and all ammunition whatsoever required for at least five thousand men, should be immediately prepared and forwarded to this place.
The city of Alexandria, situated, as it is, in the re-entering curve of the river opposite to Washington, on the convex side of the curve, is a point difficult to hold, in case the enemy shall have any designs upon it in the present weak condition of our forces. The enemy, by proceeding below, to Fort Washington or Mount Vernon, may turn the position, take it in the rear, and cut off its communication, and so by advancing
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