War of the Rebellion: Serial 002 Page 0874 OPERATIONS IN MD., PA., VA., AND W. VA.

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Harper's Ferry to give you all aid in his power, and I hope you will spare no pains to preserve the integrity of the State, and to prevent the occupation of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad by its enemies. In answer to your inquiry as to the treatment of traitors, I cannot believe that any citizen of the State will betray its interests, and hope all will unite in supporting the policy she may adopt.

Very respectfully, &c.,

R. E. LEE,

Major-General, Commanding.


Colonel R. S. GARNETT,

Adjutant-General Virginia Forces:

Request General Lee to send me one thousand well-disciplined volunteer infantry, and one battery of mounted artillery for field service. Reply by telegraph. Details will be given by mail. No enemy has landed in my department.




Fredericksburg, Va., May 24, 1861.

General R. S. GARNETT,

Adjutant-General Virginia Forces:

SIR: I have the honor to state, in answer to the communication from the commanding general of the forces, dated the 13th instant, that I cannot spare the two companies from Richmond (Captains Wise's and Cunningham's), without irreparable injury to the service for some time to come. These companies, under the command of Colonel Cary, are now (in conjunction with other forces) covering the Potomac batteries and avenues of approach, becoming acquainted with the character of the district and its natural defenses, thus rendering their services indispensable.

I have also to state (on information) that the officers and men in said companies are anxious to remain here, to be incorporated with a regiment about being organized. Their return to Richmond, it is said, would give the greatest dissatisfaction, and very probably break up these fine companies.

The receipt this morning of private advices from Washington warrants the belief that the enemy contemplate striking a blow without much further delay. Under these circumstances, as I am not able to place a sufficient force for the protection of the upper border of Staford County, from which, if a landing is once effected, a flank movement will endanger the efficiency of the Aquia Creek battery, and as the force for covering the battery on the Potomac Creek is not of sufficient strength to do full justice to the position, I respectfully recommend that one thousand well-disciplined volunteers be sent here, with a battery of four rifled or smooth-bore field guns for immediate service. With this re-enforcement I shall hope to prevent the enemy from effecting a landing or advancing before additional force may be concentrated against him.

I respectfully represent that a successful debarkation of the enemy on this part of the Potomac coast would in all probability drive a large portion of the population from between the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers, possessing themselves of a large amount of supplies, (necessary for support of the people and our forces), and thus carry