Washington, March 23, 1862.
Major-General FREMONT, New York:
The order referred to in my previous dispatch, and a copy whereof has been sent you by mail, is as follows:
WAR DEPARTMENT, ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Washington, March 22, 1862.
In the changes recently made in the boundaries of department commands it may happen that troops belonging to one department my either be in or may unavoidably pass into another. In such a case the troops so situated will continue under the command of the general under whose orders they may have been operating. But it is expected that they will be withdrawn as soon as the position they may occupy comes within the control of the proper commander of the department.
By order of the Secretary of War:
This order has been deliberately considered, and its observance is deemed highly expedient to the success of the service. You will perceive that it dispenses with the necessity of directing General Garfield to report to you; leaves your operations unembarrassed when you shall be in condition to occupy his positions; prevents exposing him to danger, and protects the service from the evils of delay or premature change of plans in prosecution.
EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.
HEADQUARTERS FIFTH ARMY CORPS,
Winchester, Va., March 23, 1862.
Brigadier General ALPHEUS S. WILLIAMS:
SIR: The enemy, supposing we had evacuated this place, are moving up in some force. Halt your division and send one brigade back to Berryville with all possible dispatch.
General Shields was slightly wounded yesterday. Open communication with us.
By command of Major-General Banks:
R. MORRIS COPELAND,
Major of Volunteers and Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
March 23, 1862.
General N. P. BANKS, Winchester:
Your dispatch reporting a skirmish in the vicinity of Winchester yesterday afternoon has been received and laid before the commanding general, who directs that General Shields' command pursue the enemy as far as Strasburg, and give him such a lesson that he will not attempt to appear again in that quarter, if in your judgment the movement can be undertaken with safety.
The commanding general also orders that you keep your cavalry well to the front, and closely watch the operations of the enemy. The commanding general regrets to learn of the injury General Shield has sustained, and hopes that he will speedily recover from his wound.