be at Strasburg by 5 o'clock p. m. Saturday, and giving at the same time an account of the broken-down condition of his men, and refereeing to the opinion or protest of his medical director that the men must have a day's rest as a reason for not being up sooner.
I leave here in a few minutes for Front Royal. Telegraph me to this place till I establish an office near headquarters.
WASHINGTON, May 30, 1862.
On the day you left I ordered Lieutenant Washington Roebling, son of the suspension-bridge builder, to report to you for duty in charge of a wire-bridge equipage, which had been prepared under his superintendence and delivered to Mr. McCallum for crossing the Shenandoah and repairing the bridge at front Royal. this material would perhaps be most serviceable. He was directed to confer with Colonel McCallum and then to report to you for duty. I hope he is with you, and that the ropes are also available. If not, Lieutenant Roebling and Colonel McCallum ought to be able to get them forward.
M. C. MEIGS,
[MANASSAS, May 30, 1862.]
General JAMES SHIELDS:
Cannot you push on to Front Royal by the railroad, drawing your supplies from the terminus of the railroad line?
FRONT ROYAL, VA., May 30, 1862.
The enemy is at Winchester. His force is variously estimated at from 20,000 to 40,000; most probably its amount is 20,000. Jackson, Ewell, and Ed. Johnson have united their forces at that place. A large force from Richmond is reported to have already entered the valley and to be marching in this direction. Fremont has not yet reached Strasburg, and I fear that he will not reach it in time. Ord's division should be pushed forward, but with supplies, or it will starve here without them. The railroad should be put in order at once, but from what I saw they have neither workmen, tools, nor bridge spikes provided. All now depends on activity. King's division ought to be ordered into the valley at once.
Duryea's and Geary's, leaving enough to guard the railway, should be pushed forward [to---] and Berryville, to fall upon the flank. Banks and Saxton should press close on his rear when he begins to fall back. The railroad should be put in working order in two days. No effort expense should be spared to effect this. A body of workmen,with tools and bridge spikes, should be employed on every