in case of emergency. I must rely on to make such dispositions as you deem judicious to render any other assistance in your power should it be needed,, or at least to give timely notice of any hostile movements from the south side. I incline myself to think the enemy have work enough before them on the Rappahannock to demand all their forces, and the such intimations as have reached General Lee are intended to mislead. Still, he is very cautious and judicious in forming his conclusions, and is advice renders every precaution possible incumbent on us.
With high esteem, very respectfully, yours,
J. A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War.
CONFIDENTIAL.] HDQRS. ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
May 30, 1863.
Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: I have the honor to recommend that you expedite as much as possible the organization of the citizens of richmond as a local force for the defense of the city. All the citizens capable of doing duty should be encouraged to take up arms for the defense of their homes.
I also recommend that such troops as can be spared from the departments of Sough Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, and from the James to the Cape Fear Rivers, should be advanced to Virginia. The brigades ordered by me from the latter department to Virginia I have directed to await your further orders, and I request or be relieved from the control of that department.
I think it probable, from information received, that General Hooker will endeavor to turn the left of my present position, and hold me in check, while an effort is made by the forces collected on York River, by forced marches and with the aid of their cavalry, under General Stoneman, to gain possession of Richmond. Two scouts from within the enemy's lines have brought me this report. it may be a rumor propagated to cause me to abandon my present position, but I think preparations had better be made to guard against any such attempt. But movements of the enemy on the Upper Rappahannock now in progress indicate an advance from him in that direction.
I need not express to you the hope that the arrangements you may think proper to make will not be of a character to excite alarm or useless apprehension in the community.
I have the honor o be, with much respect, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
May 30, 1863.
Major General D. H. HILL,
Commanding Department South of the James:
GENERAL: Your letter of May 27 has been received. I telegraphed to you this morning to suspend the execution of my order of the 25th instant. The President will give you such orders as he may see fit. I know nothing of the force in your front, but I attach no importance to the estimate of the enemy's forces in New Berne, based on the captured mail. These letters only go to show that the writers thought these