War of the Rebellion: Serial 002 Page 0046 OPERATIONS IN MD., PA., VA., AND W. VA. Chapter IX.

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partial check at the outset. If you find yourself in front of any hostile force that, either by superiority of numbers, position, or artillery, is likely to render an attack doubtful, you will remain in observation, and at once send for assistance, which can be promptly rendered to any desirable extent. The chief object of your advance is to prevent any further destruction of the railroad. You will not move on Grafton without restoring the bridges in your rear, unless you receive positive information that Colonel steedman's command has actually reached Grafton, or a neighboring point, where you can without doubt unite with him.

Colonel Steedman occupies Parkersburg to-morrow morning with two regiments, and will then proceed to take possession of the line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad as far towards Grafton as he can with safety.

You will exercise the utmost vigilance in preserving the discipline of your men, see that the property and rights of the inhabitants are in every respect carefully protected, and use every effort to conciliate the people and strengthen the Union feeling. You will at once make a requisition upon the chief quartermaster of this department for such supplies as may be necessary for your command. In the mean time, make the best use you can of the means now in your possession. Colonel Irvine will be under your orders.

With every confidence that you will leave nothing undone to carry out the very delicate and important duty with which you are instructed,

I am, colonel, very respectfully,

GEO. B. McCLELLAN,

Major-General, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE OHIO,

Cincinnati, May 26, 1861.

Colonel B. F. KELLEY,

First Regiment Virginia Volunteers, Wheeling:

If you have reliable information that bridges of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad have been burned, you will at once procure transportation on that railroad, and move your whole command, including the separate companies of Virginia volunteers not attached to your regiment, as near to Fairmont as can be done without endangering the safety of your command. Leave a sufficient guard to protect the bridges and other structures most liable to destruction. Colonel Irvine, of the Sixteenth Ohio, is ordered to cross the river and support you. Telegraph me constantly as to the state of affairs, and how much support you need. Conduct the preliminaries of your movement with as much secrecy as possible, and see that the telegraph conveys no intimation of it in any direction. Consult Major Oakes freely. The move must be made with the greatest promptness to secure the bridges. Take at least one week's rations. Accouterments will follow you to-morrow. I count on your prudence and courage. Preserve the strictest discipline. See that the rights and property of the people are respected, and repress all attempts at negro insurrection.

GEO. B. McCLELLAN,

Major-General, U. S. Army, Commanding Department.