War of the Rebellion: Serial 002 Page 0865 Chapter IX. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - CONFEDERATE.

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No. 95. Richmond, Va., May 21, 1861.

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II. Colonel John B. Magruder, of the Provisional Army of Virginia, is placed in command of the troops and military operations on the line to Hampton. He will establish his headquarters at Yorktown, take measures for the safety of the batteries at Jamestown Island and on York River, and urge forward the construction of the defenses between the heads of College and Queen Creeks, in advance of Williamsburg. The orders heretofore given to Lieutenant Colonel B. S. Ewell, Virginia volunteers, are referred to him for execution. Lieutenant-Colonel Ewell, with the troops under his command, will be stationed at the defenses in front of Williamsburg, and Major Cary on or near the Southwest Branch of the Back River, where it is crossed by the main road from Hampton. Authentic information of what occurs at Fort Monroe, and the operations of the U. S. forces, if important, will be forwarded to headquarters. Colonel L. G. De Russy, with his regiment of Louisiana volunteers; Colonel D. H. Hill, with his regiment of North Carolina volunteers, and Colonel T. P. August, with his regiment of Virginia volunteers, will report to Colonel Magruder for service under his command.

By order of Major-General Lee:




Richmond, Va., May 22, 1861.

Brigadier General M. L. BONHAM,

C. S. A.:

GENERAL: In the execution of the orders with which you have been furnished, relative to the command of the Alexandria line of operations, I need not call the attention of one as experienced as yourself to the necessity of preventing the troops from all interference with the rights and property of the citizens of the State, and of enforcing rigid discipline and obedience to orders. But it is proper for me to state to you that the policy of the State at present is strictly defensive. No attack, or privation for attack will therefore be given, but every attack resisted to the extent of your means. Great reliance is placed on your discretion and judgment in the application of your force, and I must urge upon you the importance of organizing and instructing the troops as rapidly as possible and preparing them for active service. For this purpose it will be necessary to post them where their services may be needed and where they can be concentrated at the points threatened. The Manasas Junction is a very important point on your line, as it commands the communication with Harper's Ferry, and must be firmly held. Entrenchments at that point would add to its security, and, in connection with its defense, you must watch the approaches from either flank, particularly towards Occoquan. Alexandria in its front will, of course, claim your attention as the first point of attack, and, as soon as your force is sufficient, in your opinion, to resist successfully its occupation, you will so dispose it as to effect this object, if possible, without appearing to threaten Washington City. The navigation of the Potomac being closed to us, and the U. S. armed vessels being able to take a position in front of the town, you will perceive the hazard of its destruction, unless your measures are such to prevent it. This subject,