War of the Rebellion: Serial 014 Page 0011 Chapter XXIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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that it may be supplied easily. the general thinks that if the enemy make their appearance near our front, and are not in large force, they should be driven back.


Chief of Staff.

ALEXANDRIA, March 17. (received 5.30 p. m.)

General R. B. MARCY:

Learn from general Blanks where his own division now is and when it will reach Centreville. See Barnard about the Russian Captain Wattler as engineer for Banks. Prime night also assist in defensive work for Manassas. How many guns and of what caliber can Fox bring to our assistance? The chief quartermaster should be assigned to army corps with least possible delay. Consult with Kingsbury as to giving an ordnance officer, with mechanics' tools and supply train, to each army corps, he himself merely to take the general direction of them all, without being encumbered himself either by men or material. Inform me what he thinks of this.

Does Banks understand that shields is to hold with his whole force the valley of the Shenandoah, at least to Strasburg, until Manassas Gap Railway is completed and in operation?


WASHINGTON, March 17, 1862-6.30 p. m.

(Sent 8.10 p. m)


Alexandria, Va.:

I gave General Banks his instructions this morning, and he has left to hurry off his division to Centreville. He was directed to leave one brigade of Shields' division in the valley of the Shenandoah, but I will order him to retain the entire division until the Manassas Gap Railroad is completed.

He did not know when his division would get off, but he will hurry it, and says they will be three days en route. He has to take a part of his wagons from Sedwick, at harper's Ferry, and I should not think he would get his division to Centreville in less time than six days. I will at once give him specific instructions to have Shields guard the valley of the Shenandoah till the Manassas Gap railroad is finished.

I have sent for General Barnard and Colonel kingsbury, and will attend to your other instructions as soon as I can see them.

I have telegraphed General Banks to know at what time his division will reach Centreville.

I have just learned that General Van Vliet and Colonel Kingsbury have both gone to Alexandria.


Chief of Staff.


Seminary, March 17, 1862 - 11.45 p. m.

The First, Second, Third, and Fourth Army Corps will at once be concentrated on their divisions nearest Alexandria, and the commanders of