HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE PENINSULA, Numbers 657.
Yorktown, March 9, 1862-3 a. m.
Colonel Winston and Major Phillips will proceed at daylight in the neighborhood of New Market Bridge, sending a party of observation in the neighborhood of New Bridge. It is desirable to approach New Market Bridge through the woods, as the enemy is in great force in the neighborhood of Newport News. Colonel Winston is informed that our cavalry under Lieutenant-Colonel Goode and a regiment of infantry under Colonel Cumming will make a demonstration on the Warwick road on Newport News early this morning, and that the troops and artillery at Ship Point will march at daylight, and that the troops and other troops of the Peninsula, except the necessary guards, will take post at Young's and Harrod's Mills.
Colonel Winston will endeavor to surprise any party of the enemy that he may find about New Market Bridge. He will ascertain whether the enemy are on the Scondam road or not, and if not, he will send his dragoons by that road to communicate with Colonel Cumming, who will thereupon advance toward Newport News, displaying his force to the best advantage, but will not engage the enemy if he advances, except that our cavalry will charge their cavalry or their artillery if the occasion offers.
Colonel Winston will keep his troops in ambush, securing for himself a safe retreat; and should the enemy advance he will permit their heads of columns to pass him and fall upon their flanks, and thus annoy him all the way in his advance.
By command of Major-General Magruder:
Young's Mill, Va., March 10, 1862.
Commodore BUCHANAN, C. S. N.:
COMMODORE: It is with the most cordial satisfaction that I tender you my most hearty congratulations on the glorious and brilliant victory you achieved over the enemy on Saturday and Sunday last. I consider it the greatest achievement of the age, and am delighted beyond expression that it was accomplished under your auspices and that of my friend Lieutenant Catesby Ap R. Jones.
I went down in person as soon as I heard of the attack, and had given some orders for the movements of troops and one of my regiments, with 250 cavalry, and remained in front of the works within a mile and a half for some two hours yesterday without artillery, but though very strong - I think at least 15,000 - they did not come out to attack us.
I regret to hear that you are wounded, but hope your wound will not prove serious.
I send you this hasty expression of my extreme satisfaction by Sergeant Tabb, whose departure I cannot delay.
With the highest respect, I remain, commodore, very sincerely, yours,
J. BANKHEAD MAGRUDER,