to prevent all marauding, excess, or irregularity. Thus far I have not heard a word of complaint.
I shall dispatch scouting parties this morning along the several roads leading from the town toward Strasburg, Gordonsville, and the Rappahannock, and endeavor to ascertain whether the enemy are in any force on this side of that river.
According to the latest reports received from contrabands, there are no troops of any account nearer to us than Culpeper, and not many there. The country in the vicinity is highly favorable for the purpose of an encampment. The climate is proverbially healthy; wood and water convenient and plenty, and the communication with the depot at Gainesville easy and secure.
The several calls made upon the cavalry regiment in my division for detached duty have reduced it five companies. This force is inadequate tot he services required of it. I therefore respectfully request that the battalion under Major Duffie, now at department headquarters, unless imperatively needed there, may be directed to rejoin the regiment.
Awaiting any orders or information that you may have to transmit, I am, colonel, your obedient servant,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.
FRONT ROYAL, Saturday, June 7, 1862.
SECRETARY OF WAR:
When General McDowell left here for Washington he sent me the order following:*
* * * * * * *
As the command of the staff in necessary to the efficient command of the troops, I have, under the 62nd article of war, assumed command of the whole, and now ask if the President, under that article of war, directs otherwise.
E. O. C. ORD,
Major-General, Commanding at Front Royal.
COLUMBIA BRIDGE, VA.,
June 7, 1862-2 a. m.
Commanding Fourth Brigade, Conrad's Store:
Such is my anxiety that I rise from my bed to write to you. Captain Keiley, who will hand you this, has just returned from New Market. The enemy passed New Market on the 5th; Blenker's division on the 6th in pursuit. The enemy has flung away everything; knapsacks and their stragglers fill the mountain. They only need a movement on the flank to panic-strike them, and break them into fragments. No man has had such a chance since the war commenced. Few men ever had such a chance. You are within 30 miles of a broken, retreating enemy, who still hangs together. Ten thousand Germans are on his rear, who hang on like bull-dogs. You have only to throw yourself down on Waynesborough before him and your cavalry will capture them by
*See Schriver to McDowell, June 6, p. 349.