embraces the geographical limits of the District, and will also include the city of Alexandria, the defensive works south of the Potomac from the Occoquan to Difficult Creek, and the post of Fort Washington.
I inclose a list of the troops and of the defenses embraced in these limits.
General Banks will command at Manassas Junction, with the divisions of Williams and Shields, composing the Fifth Corps; but you should nevertheless exercise vigilance in your front, carefully guard the approaches in that quarter, and maintain the duties of advanced guards. You will use the same precautions on either flank.
All troops not actually needed for the police of Washington and Georgetown, for the garrisons north of the Potomac, and for other indicated special duties should be moved to the south side of the river. In the center of your front you should post the main body of your troops and proper proportions at suitable distances toward your right and left flanks.
Careful patrols will be make, in order thoroughly to scour the country in front from right to left.
It is specially enjoined upon you to maintain the forts and their armaments in the best possible order, to look carefully to the instruction and discipline of their garrisons, as well as all other troops under your command, and by frequent and rigid inspections to insure the attainment of these ends.
The care of the railways, canals, depots, bridges, and ferries within the above-named limits will devolve upon you, and you are to insure their security and provide for their protection by every means in your power.
You will also thoroughly protect the depots of the public stores and the transit of stores to the troops in active service.
By means of patrols you will thoroughly scour the neighboring country south of the Eastern Branch, and also on your right, and you will use every possible precaution to intercept mails, goods, and persons passing unauthorized to the enemy's lines.
The necessity of maintaining good order within your limits, and especially in the capital of the nation, cannot be too strongly enforced.
You will forward and facilitate the movement of all troops destined for the active part of the Army of the Potomac, and especially the transit of detachments to their proper regiments and corps.
The charge of all new troops arriving in Washington and of all troops temporarily there will devolve upon you. You will form them into provisional brigades, promote their instruction and discipline, and facilitate their equipment. Report all arrivals of troops, their strength, composition, and equipment by every opportunity.
Besides the regular reports and return which you will be required to render to the Adjutant-General of the Army, you will make to these headquarters a consolidated morning report of your command every Sunday morning and a monthly return on the first day of each moth.
The foregoing instructions are communicated by command of Major-General McClellan.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,