War of the Rebellion: Serial 018 Page 0858 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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Harrisonburg, Va., April 18, 1862.

(Received April 19, 1 p. m.)

Major General R. S. EWELL,

Commanding Potomac District:

GENERAL: Circumstances have so changed since Mr. Boswell left that I will be prevented from joining you at Fisher's Gap.* You will therefore come on the direct road to this point via Stanardsville.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


P. S.-Please acknowledge the receipt of this, and direct Mr. Boswell to rejoin me and let Mr. Meade by your guide.


April 20, 1862.

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector-General:

SIR: I forwarded a letter by Mr. Turner, in which I spoke of the feasibility of attacking the enemy in my front. I was telegraphed by Mr. Turner that I was under General Johnston's orders, and that I knew his views.

I received on the 17th, at night, a letter from General J. [Johnson] authorizing the attack. It was then too late, as I had received orders from General Jackson to join him, and the river being past fording I had not time. The movement would not have been made under the circumstances, and I merely write to call attention to one singular part of this affair. General Lee told Mr. Turner that General Johnston had conversed with me by telegraph. The only one I received on the subject from any one was the above from Mr. Turner. High water and General Jackson's movements prevented anything being done by me, and I merely write on the subject, as there seems a possibility of want of faith by some of the telegraph operators.





Richmond, April 21, 1862.

General R. S. EWELL,

Commanding Third Division;

GENERAL: Your letter of the 20th has been received. When I wrote to you in reference to your proposition to advance against the enemy in your front I was under the impression that General Johnston had communicated with you by telegraph. It seems it was by letter, and I therefore see no reason for doubting the fidelity of the telegraph line, which you think may be involved. I am ignorant of the strength of the enemy east of the Rappahannock in your late front. General Field has


*See Jackson to Ewell, same date, p. 854.