BALTIMORE, July 16, 1862-11.50 a. m.
Brigadier General JOHN POPE:
I have seen a number of letters from Winchester and Martinsburg, stating that the rebels are in the valley of Virginia, and an attack is expected on Winchester, Harper's Ferry, or Martinsburg. You probably may know if there is any foundation for the rumor.
JOHN E. WOOL,
HEADQUARTERS MIDDLE DEPARTMENT, Baltimore, July 16, 1862.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: Major A. G. A. Constable, ordnance officer, stationed at Wheeling, will hand you this communication. He can give you much interesting information.
You did me the honor to assign me to the command of the Middle Department and all officers and troops on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad for its protection from Baltimore to Wheeling and from Harper's Ferry to Winchester.
The duties thus assigned me have given me no rest s of scarcely day or night. Since I assumed command I have found myself embarrassed by orders from Major-Generals Banks and Sigel, who, disregarding me as the commander, have frequently given orders for the removal of officers and troops on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad without the slightest notice to myself; among others, Major Constable, ordnance officer, and the commissary at Wheeling, with the ordnance and commissary stores at that place, breaking it up as a place of deposit, which, as it appears to me, ought not to be done. This interference has compelled me to issue orders forbidding any officer on the roads placed under my charge from obeying any orders from any general without my sanction or approval, excepting supplies designed for the command of those generals and those for General Fremont, the amount of which was extraordinarily large.
It would appear that these generals neither knew what they wanted nor how much. At New Creek more than a million of dollars' worth of munitions of war were deposited without the slightest protection, but has been ordered, as I am informed, to Alexandria; as also a large supply of provisions deposited at Harper's Ferry have been sent to Baltimore by my orders in order to save them. The ordnance supplies ad provisions at Wheeling have, I believe, been ordered to Washington.
When I was at Martinsburg I found twenty cannot of small caliber on their way to General Fremont's army, which I ordered forward at once, and so reported to the general. These guns, with other property, were recently found in some by-places without any protection. I ordered them, with the other property, to Harper's Ferry. I believe Major-General Sigel has since called for them.
If the Union is not bankrupt it will not be because of the enormous waste and destruction of public property by men ignorant of the profession which called them into the field. Why, sir, they have furnished the rebels with arms, ammunition, and other supplies sufficient to last them through a six months' campaign.
Permit me to ask how long do you think the Northern States will