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 II | Pages range from 1 to 1012

Go to Page (current volume):  
Index | Previous | Next
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 2, Part 1 (First Manassas Campaign)
Page 862 OPERATIONS IN MD., PA., VA., AND W. VA.

who have collected from far and near to give a summary chastisement to any force which may have the hardihood to invade the soil of Virginia. This spirit is invincible.

This afternoon I shall endeavor to reach the Maryland Heights. To-morrow I shall finish my inspection of the troops, and will muster into the service of the Confederate States nine companies of Maryland volunteers, who are exiled from their State, and are here drawing rations, and are anxious to serve for the war.

On Friday or Saturday I will return to Richmond, visiting General Cocke's command en route, and will then submit my report in full to Major-General Lee.

I have not asked Colonel Jackson his opinion on the subject, but my own is that there is force enough here to hold this place against any attack which, under the existing state of affairs, may be contemplated.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. DEAS,

Lieutenant-Colonel and Inspector-General, C. S. Army.

WILLIAMSBURG, VA., May 21, 1861.

Major General R. E. LEE,

Commanding Virginia Forces:

SIR: The receipt of your communication of the 20th instant is hereby respectfully acknowledged. In a letter received to-day from Major Cary, there is the following: "It is evidently the purpose of Colonel Dimick to take possession of a portion of Virginia soil." I think so too, if his garrison requires more space. I have prohibited a useless and hopeless resistance to this until Colonel Dimick is at least out of the range of the Old Point guns with the force that may accompany him. It is difficult to manage Hampton. The people are excitable and brave even to rashness, and are unwilling to seem to give way. It (Hampton) might, on the approach in force of the Federal troops, be evacuated by the military, and the remaining citizens ought to make terms, unless, indeed, it is made a second Saragossa. I doubt if, from the nature of the buildings, this could be done. For the adjutant of the battalion here, I wish to appoint Prof. E. Taliaferro. He has not much military experience, but has great intelligence, is firm and cool, has industry and activity, and is to be depended upon. I prefer him to any one I know here, and ask authority to appoint him from the ranks, or else to have him elected a supernumerary officer of a volunteer company, that I may appoint him. There are no field pieces here yet. Excuse me for calling your special attention to this fact. Before knowing your intention to order troops to Yorktown, with Captain Meade's assistance I adopted a line of defense on the land side, covering the road from Old Point, the Poquosion River, and, in fact, from every landing on the York River below Yorktown. The plan was to repair the redoubt built by the British for the defense of this or these roads, and to erect another small redoubt; both to be defended with field pieces. The two hundred and forty men now in Yorktown, for the defense of the battery of two guns, could not hold the place against a field battery, muskets not being able to cope in an open country with a well-appointed battery. This fact, or advice, is not stated to inform you, but as a mode of making known the necessities of the force at Yorktown. Major Montague and myself are on the most friendly terms, and, if you approve of it, I am perfectly willing to aid him in the repairing and


Page 862 OPERATIONS IN MD., PA., VA., AND W. VA.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 2, Part 1 (First Manassas Campaign)
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