War of the Rebellion: Serial 018 Page 0325 Chapter XXIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE RAPPAHANNOCK,

Front Royal, June 3, 1862.

Major General JOHN C. FREMONT,

Commanding Department, near Woodstock:

GENERAL: I received and forwarded your telegram to the Secretary of War.

I have just received a note from the Secretary, saying General McClellan had beaten the enemy badly before Richmond.

I have not heard to-day from General Shields. I hope he may be able to head Jackson, especially as your vigorous pursuit must retard his retreat.

I am, general, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

IRVIN MCDOWELL,

Major-General, Commanding Department of the Rappahannock.

WASHINGTON, June 3, 1862 - 6.15 p. m.

Major-General MCDOWELL,

Front Royal, Va.:

Anxious to know whether Shields can head or flank Jackson. Please tell about where Shields and Jackson, respectively, are at the time this reaches you.

A. LINCOLN.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE RAPPAHANNOCK,

June 3, 1862. (Received 9.30 a. m. June 4.)

Honorable SECRETARY OF WAR:

The following has just been received from Major-General Shields:

LURAY, June 3 - 10.30 a. m.

Major-General MCDOWELL,

Commanding Army of the Rappahannock:

GENERAL: The route from here to New Market is impracticable. The rebels burned down the bridges on the route; one called the Columbia Bridge, 10 miles from here, over the river, the other the White House Bridge, on the direct route over the river. The rains have so swelled the river that every effort to construct a bridge of boats has proved impracticable. My only chance now is to push on to Conrad's Store. The bridge there I expect to find burned also, but by going higher up we may find a ford. This would bring us out at Harrisonburg. If the river rises as at present it is doing I cannot hope to ford even there.

My next move will be to push on to Stanardsville, destroy there railroad and depot, and if possible to Staunton or Charlottesville. I have no cavalry. The Rhode Island cavalry has broken down and I must send it back, keeping only a few for orderlies. This cavalry has been sadly neglected. Can you not send me cavalry that can work, forage, & c.? If I cannot take the enemy in reverse at Rude's Hill, look to it. You cannot carry it in front without loss, and perhaps heavy loss. Rude's Hill is between Mount Jackson and New Market. I drove him out by a flank movement on the west side of the turnpike, but I fear the river is too high now to effect this. With good cavalry I could stampede them to Richmond. I will destroy their means of escape somehow. Send my cavalry that can march and know how to take care of themselves.

Yours, most respectfully,

JAS. SHIELDS,

Commanding Division.

The amount of all this is that he cannot cross the Shenandoah in time to intercept Jackson. The river is swollen and has carried away