position at Culpeper,&c., it would be advantageous. I do not now see any reason for hastening you march, if it has been commenced; but I wish you would advise me of your line of approach from point to point, that I may notify you, should any necessity exist.
I will send this to Madison, in hopes that it will meet you there, as I inter that you will cross the mountain at Milan's Gap.
Should you think it advisable to halt at Culpeper, or to make any demonstration on the enemy's rear, I request you to do so. In the mean time, should any movement of the enemy make it desirable that you should join me at once, I will advise you.
General Burnside has thrown back from view the force he so ostentatiously displayed on his first arrival, but I believe his object has been to secure his camps and facilitate his attempt of supplies. Only a small force is now visible from this side, and I anticipate no forward small force is now visible from this side,and I anticipate no forward movement until the wharves on the Potomac are constructed and the railroad to the Rappahannock repaired. As far as I can judge, his plan is to advance on Richmond from this base; and, to delay him as long as practicable and throw him into the winter, I have determined to resist him from the beginning. Your corps may, therefore, be needed here; and if, from the circumstances which surround you, you see that no good can be obtained from a flank movement on Culpeper or Warrenton, you can march directly to this point.
I am, respectfully, &c.,
R. E. LEE,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA, Near Fredericksburg, November 25, 1862-7 p.m.
Lieutenant General THOMAS J. JACKSON,
GENERAL: I received this evening your note of 7.10, from near Strasburg.* I wrote to you this morning, and referred to a communication forwarded on the 23rd instant. In both I gave the position of the enemy and of our forces, and presented suggestions for your consideration and adoption, should the circumstances by which you are surrounded render it advisable.
The enemy is still quiet in our front, presenting a small force to view; but his whole army, I believe, stretches from the Rappahannock to the Potomac. As far as I can discover, all his forces in Eastern Virginia appear to be concentrated here, and, from the tone of the Northern papers, I judge that it is a settled purpose of the Washington Government that the advance upon Richmond shall be made from this point. As yet no movement has been made, or any attempt,to bridge the Rappahannock. The delay may be occasioned by the necessity of reconstructing the wharves on the Potomac and railway to the Rappahannock. I have thought that if we could take a threatening position on his right flank, as a basis from which Stuart, with his cavalry, could operate energetically, he would be afraid to advance, and hence I hoped that you would have found it convenient to cross the Blue Ridge at Chester Gap, so as to threaten him through Fauquier or Culpeper. I believe now, if you take a position at Culpeper Court-House, throw