Report to headquarters at Front Royal frequently. Your intention to patrol between the mountains and the river is approved.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant-Colonel and Chief of Staff.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE RAPPAHANNOCK,
Rectortown, Va., May 31, 1862.
Major General E. O. C. ORD,
GENERAL: The major-general commanding directs me to inform you that it is of the first importance that you and your division be at Front Royal to-night. The more readily to accomplish this, the general directs that you leave your knapsacks piled up at some railroad crossing under the charge of a guard, to be composed of a commissioned officer from each brigade and a non-commissioned officer and three privates from each regiment. These guards and the knapsacks will be take up by the train as soon as it passes the crossing.
Colonel and Chief of Staff.
WASHINGTON, May 31, 1862.
I have just returned from Harper's Ferry. The enemy has been before that place and threatening an attack for two days. Deserters report that Jackson is in command, and that in a speech made to his men in Charlestown on Monday a. m. he promised them less marching and better fare in a few days, when they would enter Maryland. It is supposed that the attack on Harper's Ferry [was abandoned from?] an apprehension of the advance of your force and General Fremont, to cut off retreat. When do you except to reach Winchester? Where is Shields?
P. H. WATSON,
Washington City, D. C., May 31, 1862.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: I have the honor to report my return from Harper's Ferry, and that I have executed the commission with which you charged me.
Among other things to which, I deem it my duty to call your attention is the disgraceful conduct of Maulsby's Home Guards, as witnessed by myself at Harper's Ferry, early yesterday morning. On the night previous a large part of that regiment was, as I am informed, assigned to duty in the town of Harper's Ferry, to guard the ordnance, quartermaster, and commissary stores, picket the streets leading to the country and the margins of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers, to prevent the entrance or departure of spies, and give notice of any attempt of the enemy to cross the Shenandoah into the town.