direct. Have you anything later or more reliable? Our last accounts represent McClellan as moving toward the White House. Until his movement develops we propose to retain Hill and McLaws. What do you think of it? State at what hour your dispatches are sent and I will do the same.
G. W. RANDOLPH,
Secretary of War.
HEADQUARTERS, CRENSHAW'S [FARM],
Via Gordonsville, Va., [August] 19, 1862.
Honorable GEORGE W. RANDOLPH, Secretary of War:
It is reported a body of the enemy is moving from Fredericksburg toward Hanover Junction. Troops from Richmond could march at once to North Anna, assemble there, protect railroad, and then be moved according to circumstances.
R. E. LEE.
OFFICE OF THE PROVOST-MARSHAL OR ALLEGHANY,
August 20, 1862. (Received August 25, 1862.)
SECRETARY OF WAR:
On May 18 last the Yankees burned the bridge across the Cow Pasture River, since which time trains have ceased to run on the Virginia Central Railroad west of Staunton, As the attorney of the company I have urged the rebuilding of the bridge at once, but the company declines, not knowing what the fortunes of war may be or how soon the bridge, if built, may be destroyed again. The Yankees have fallen back from Meadow Bluff beyond the Sewells, and the Government must drive them beyond the Kanawha Salt-Works, as it is indispensable the us to have the salt; and, if so, the very sinews of our strength, the very arteries of the existence of our army when it moves from Monroe to Greenbrier, on the Kanawha road, is the Central Railroad, for the Government has just completed and put in good order the road from River Depot to Lewisburg; the Yankees have from Lewisburg to Gauley. I have seen the engineer of the Central, who says that a good temporary bridge can be put up in one month, and I write to advise that your order it at once. If you think the advice is of a doubtful character, then, with the maps of the State before you, I am content for you to decide it.
I am, truly,
Provost-Marshal of Alleghany and Commanding Post at Covington.
P. S.-H. D. Whitcomb, esq., superintendent of the Virginia Central Railroad, at Richmond, could give you probable cost and time within which a temporary bridge might be built.
SALT SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. VA.,
Via Dublin, W. Va., August 21, 1862.
Honorable GEORGE W. RANDOLPH:
General Jenkins is ready for his expedition. Let him know what