eHistory logo Primary Sources Section
Primary Sources Home | Search eHistory

The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

You are currently in Volume XIX | Pages range from 1 to 739

Go to Page (current volume):  
Index | Previous | Next
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 19, Part 2 (Antietam)
Page 656 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXI.

delayed only long enough to move my sick and captured and accumulated stores with the rather insufficient wagon-train at my disposal.

As I have before within to you, this valley could only be held until high waters gave access to gunboats and easy transportation to the enemy; and the scarcity of supplies here and the great distance from those in my rear are additional reason for the orders

of General Lee, which strike me as eminently wise. I deem it proper to add, that, if I am entirely withdrawn from this line, the enemy will have an open road to the Southwestern Railroad, and the State troops, who are not numerous nor organized, will be unable to repel the invasion. I earnestly commend this subject to the attention of the Government.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.


HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA, Charleston, W. Va., October 8, 1862.

Hon. GEORGE W. RANDOLPH,
Secretary of War:

SIR: In addition to what I wrote you day before yesterday, I have been informed that the enemy in my front has been re-enforced from Northeast Kentucky about 3,000, making their aggregate number from 13,000 to 15,000. You know the size of my army. The President has likewise written that he is informed that the enemy is fitting out an expedition to go from Pittsburgh, Pa., via Gallipolis, to regain these salt works. All this goes to confirm men in the opinion that my proper route is by the way of Lewisburg and thence northward, which movement I commenced to-day.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Richmond, Va., October 8, 1862.

General R. E. LEE,

Commanding Army of the Northern Virginia:

GENERAL: I have received your letter of the 4th instant in reference to the reorganization of your artillery, and feeling the imperative necessity of the measure, but doubting its strict conformity to law, I deem it best to refrain from any decision of the question.

On the 1st instant I addressed a letter to the President, calling his attention to the absolute necessity of conferring on the Executive the power to consolidate companies and regiments, and to make appointments where neither election nor promotion furnish competent officers to fill vacancies. I ventured to quote your opinion and that of General Cooper in support of the measure, and to express my belief that without such power you would be forced to violate law or to permit the ruin of your army. The President sent in a message recommending legislation to supply the defect. Should this be done, and commissions for the summary trial of offenders be provided, you will possess the means of reorganizing and disciplining your army.

We are exerting ourselves to the utmost to re-enforce you, and I am happy to observe an increase of over 20,000 men in eight days. I think that we shall be able to send you during the rest of the campaign 500


Page 656 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXI.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 19, Part 2 (Antietam)
Index | Previous | Next
This symbol external link icon indicates an external link
All images and content are the property of eHistory at The Ohio State University unless otherwise stated.
Copyright © 2014 OSU Department of History. All rights reserved. [citation and copyright information]
eHistory icon