War of the Rebellion: Serial 014 Page 0153 Chapter XXIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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pushed on to day as far as Kent Court-House, 29 miles from Richmond.

We have taken a large number of prisoners, all of whom have been given passes to go back to Williamsburg, not wishing to be encumbered by taking them along.

The advance will be made to Kent Court-House to-morrow morning, from which point reconnoitering parties will be pushed in advance and on our left.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEORGE STONEMAN,

Brigadier-General, Chief of Cavalry, Commanding Advance Guard.

FORT MONROE, May 8, 1862 - 11 a. m.

P. H. WATSON,

Assistant Secretary of War:

An attack on Sewell's Point will be made to-day. Commander Rodgers whit three gunboats moved this morning up the James River toward Richmond. We shall advance directly on Norfolk. Cannonading up the James River can be distinctly heard at this moment, supposed to be our gunboats attacking the Yorktown and Jamestown, that went up two night ago. Report says that al the tobacco, oil, and cotton are being removed from Norfolk. Things are moving now.

EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

FORT MONROE, May 8, 1862 - 2 p. m.

P. H. WATSON,

Assistant Secretary of War:

The President is at this moment (2 o'clock p. m.) at Fort Wool, witnessing our gunboats - three of them, besides the Monitor and Stevens - shelling the rebel batteries on Sewell's Point. At the same time heavy firing up the James River indicates that Rodgers and Morris are fighting the Jamestown and Yorktown up the James River. The boom of heavy cannonading strikes the ear every minute. The Sawyer gun in Fort Wool has silenced one battery on Sewell's Point. The James rifle wounded on Fort Wool also does good work. It was a beautiful sight to witness the boats moving on to Sewell's Point, and one after another opening fire and blazing away every minute. The troops will be ready in an hour to move. The ships engaged are the Dacotah, the Savannah, the San Jacinto, the Monitor, and the Stevens. The Merrimac has not made her appearance, but is expected in the field every minute. A rebel tug came over this morning, and the deserters said the Merrimac was at Nortfolk when they left.

EDWIN M. STANTON.

WILLIAMSBURG, (Received May 9, 1862, 12.19 a. m.)

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War:

I respectfully ask permission to reorganize the army corps. I am not willing to be held responsible for the present arrangement, experi-