side. At General Lee's suggestion General Early replaces the Texas brigade on the left of my line, and that brigade moved to the other side of the Po in support of the guns there.
C. W. FIELD,
P. S.-I think General Lee desires this information sent him.
C. W. F.
[MAY 20, 1864.]
Lieutenant General R. S. EWELL, Commanding:
GENERAL: General Lee directs me to say that Major General W. H. F. Lee reports at 2.30 p. m. that his pickets were driven in at Smith's Mill, where the Telegraph road crosses the Ny River. They report that the enemy has a line of dismounted skirmishers, followed by infantry.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
P. S.-The enemy seems to be lengthening out his line down the Ny, offering us an opportunity to strike at him. The general wishes to know whether you discover any movement of the enemy in your front, and whether his rear is weak enough for you to strike at?
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE NORTHERN VIRGINIA,
May 20, 1864-8.30 p. m.
Lieutenant General R. S. EWELL, Commanding Corps:
GENERAL: General Lee bids me say that the enemy seems now, by the reports of our reconnoitering officers, to have extended his left to the Po in front of Anderson's. He has heard nothing from you of the enemy in your front, or of the necessity of your retaining your present position. He desires you to have your troops in readiness to move at daybreak to-morrow to take position on the right. He desires you to move at that time without further orders, provided you find nothing to detain you in your present position. Your troops can move by the road in rear of the lines out of view, and cross the Po at Crutchfield's. Your wagons can move by the old Spotsylvania Court-House road. He desires to hear from you.
Yours, very respectfully,
C. S. VENABLE,
HEADQUARTERS THIRD ARMY CORPS,
May 20, 1864-10.15 p. m.
Lieutenant Colonel W. H. TAYLOR,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Army of Northern Virginia:
COLONEL: I have put into the trenches one of Kirkland's regiments, of Heth's division, and one of Harris' regiments, of Anderson's division, numbering together about 475 men, which were in reserve. This will enable Field to withdraw the Texas brigade.
J. A. EARLY,
51 R R - VOL XXXVI, PT III