I have just heard from a scout, a gentleman of standing, whose letter I send by General Taylor. He reports the line stripped in front of the Rappahannock toward Manassas; promises more positive information in a few days.
I have not destroyed the bridges, &c., on the railroad between the Rappahannock and Rapidan. They are small, and I was instructed not to destroy the one over the Rapidan.
General Taylor takes this to Richmond. He is well posted in the position of affairs on the Rappahannock and the forces of the enemy, as far as known to this time.
R. S. E.
MADISON COURT-HOUSE, April 29, 1862.
Major General R. S. EWELL:
DEAR SIR: I have just seen Mr. Green, from Rappahannock County, who visited Warrenton the night before last. No Yankees were there except a few stragglers. They occupied the railroads in detachments of from 50 to 100 men at intervals of about 5 miles.
I have been unable to learn yet where their principal forces are, but think from all the information I can get that Geary is somewhere between Salem and Markham.
Geary has threatened to hold the citizens responsible for any obstruction placed on the railroads by any one. I feel satisfied that they do not occupy Fauquier or Prince William in force.
If possible you shall her from me to-morrow, but recollect that from Stanardsville to the Rappahannock it is not less than 50 miles. The roads are in many places very bad.
From here to Stanardsville it is 15 miles. The road is very bad in many places, and it is at least a day's march to this point. From here to Culpeper is 20 miles.
I cannot learn that anyone but Geary is in command at Fauquier.
I may be absent several days. I shall not return until I get something definite, but will endeavor to keep you advised of all movements of the enemy in Fauquier.
Richmond, Va., May 1, 1862.
Major General R. S. EWELL,
Commanding, &c., near Stanardsville:
GENERAL: Your letter of the 30th ultimo, with the inclosure, is received. A letter from General Jackson of the 29th ultimo apprised me of a movement toward Staunton which he had in contemplation, and which is doubtless that referred to by you. This explains the necessity of your occupying the place of General Jackson until his return. All the information I have received confirms your intelligence with regard to the force of the enemy in front of the Rappahannock toward Manassas. It is desirable to remove the supplies in the country referred to by you, but I do not know how it can be done. The cattle, horses, &c., might be driven off, and I advise that you continue to accumulate stores at Gordonsville for your command. You will keep your com-