ment in Massachusetts, and Major Cobb's light battery, ready, waiting, and anxious to join me here if an order were only given, and there are ample means of transportation for this.
The General-in-Chief is thus possessed substantially with all the information I have, and it is for his better judgment to deal with the exigency. I will do the best my limited knowledge and experience will permit with the material I have. Perhaps the General would advise a joint land and sea attack upon the battery on Sewell's Point. If there are any such numbers as are claimed at Norfolk, it will be seen that it would be impossible to hold the battery to hold the battery if it were taken.
I have the honor to be, with much respect, your obedient servant,
BENJ. F. BUTLER,
WASHINGTON, June 20, 1861.
General R. PATTERSON,
U. S. A., Hagerstown, Md.:
I desire you to cause to be examined the Maryland Heights, overlooking Harper's Ferry, with a view to a battery sufficient to hold the same, and also without delay to propose to me a plan of operations with a portion of you force to sweep the enemy from Leesburg towards Alexandria, in co-operation with a strong column from this end of the same road. Of course it is designed that you should absorb the column of Colonel Stone, now covering the fords and ferries on the Potomac below Leesburg; the remainder of your troops (now many?) to be left to cover the detachment on the Maryland Heights. Reply promptly.
(Copy to General McDowell).
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA, Hagerstown, Md., June 20, 1861.
Brigadier General J. S. NEGLEY,
Commanding Fifth Brigade, near Hagerstown, Md.:
GENERAL: The commanding general directs you to move as early as practicable towards Sharpsburg, and take position on the Sharpsburg road, near to Bakersville, a little to the right of the Sharpsburg road, throw forward your pickets towards Mercersville and Sharpsburg, and carefully guard against surprise. Protect as much as in your power, consistent with the safety of your command, the people in your vicinity, and wherever your guards may be sent be cautious not to be entrapped so far to the left that any portion may bee cut off. Be cautious and be sure that you receive no check or reverse. The commanding general has sent Lieutenant Smith, of the Topographical Engineers, to select a proper ground, and to locate your command for defensive purposes. Colonel Owen will follow you as soon as practicable, and you are directed immediately on arrival to report your proximity to General Cadwalader, and ask him to keep open communication.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
F. J. PORTER,