days. Unless I have constant information from the commanders of all detachments and corps it is impossible for me to arrange general movements. My instructions to you were to report when you reached Warenton Junction. I learn from other sources that you reached there at 8. 30 a. m. on the 27th, yet I have nothing from you. I must insist upon it that I have full information of everything that transpires.
GEO. B. McCLELLAN,
HEADQUARTERS SECOND CORPS D'ARMEE,
Warrenton Junction, March 28, 1862.
General S. WILLIAMS,
A. A. G., Headquarters Army of Potomac, Seminary:
Since General Howard marched he has reported to me that his advance has come up with a squadron of the enemy's cavalry and was skirmishing with it. Having heard nothing further from him, I presume the enemy has been brushed out of his way. Should General Howard be driven back by a superior force, shall I advance instantly with my command beyond this point?
E. V. SUMNER,
Brigadier-General, U. S. Army, Commanding Second Army Corps.
March 28, 1862-10 p. m.
Your two dispatches of this date have been received. General Howard reports this evening that he is within 3 miles of Rappahannock River, driving a regiment of cavalry before him. He has not seen any infantry in force. I presume all is right. I shall not move on Warrenton until general Howard returns.
E. V. SUMNER,
Brigadier-General, U. S. Army.
Seminary, March 28, 1862.
(Sent 10.5 p. m.)
General E. V. SUMNER:
Your dispatch of this date has been received and laid before the commanding general, who directs that in the event of General Howard meeting with a large force of the enemy you at once move to his support, and if you find the enemy's force greatly superior to your own you will cover General Howard's retreat to Warrenton Junction or the strongest position in its vicinity, where you will make a stand and report for further instructions.