War of the Rebellion: Serial 018 Page 0878 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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mand in readiness to move toward Fredericksburg or to co-operate with General Jackson in any movement he may make against the enemy at the White Plains or Salem, as occasion may require.

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

R. E. LEE,

General, Commanding.


Richmond, Va., May 1, 1862.

Major General THOMAS J. JACKSON,

Commanding, &c., Swift Run Gap:

GENERAL: Your letter of the 29th ultimo is received, and I have carefully considered the three plans of operation proposed by you. I must leave the selection of the one to be adopted to your judgment. So far as re-enforcements at this time are concerned, I have already informed you of the state of affairs that prevents me from sending them. You will therefore us your discretion in employing the forces now available so as to accomplish the best result you can attain. If you can strike an effective blow against the enemy west of Staunton it will be very advantageous. You might then avail yourself of your success to bring with you General Johnson's command, leaving a guard on the road beyond Staunton, and move your army thus re-enforced back to the Blue Ridge. Should your combined forces, with those of General Ewell, prove strong enough to warrant an attack on General Banks, it might then be made. But if this should not be the case, as my information be enabled to leave a force sufficient to mask your movement, and send a strong column to attack the enemy at White Plains or Salem. This would threaten Banks' communication at Winchester and probably cause him to fall back. It might also relieve and discretion in these matters, and be careful to husband the strength of your command as much as possible. Two signal-men have been ordered to you. They can readily instruct as many as you may require.

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

R. E. LEE,



Brown's Gap, May 3, 1862.

Major General R. S. EWELL [Conrad's Store]:

MY DEAR GENERAL: The bad roads have greatly impeded my progress, but my opinion is that the roads have been so repaired by my command that they are in a better condition than before I left you. The proposition to turn Banks by New Market has received much attention from me, and we both consulted together about it previous to my leaving. I am of the opinion that the attempt is too hazardous so long as Banks keeps a strong force near New Market.

I have been relying on spies for my information from the enemy.



were sent you. I regret that the entire company could not be spared.

Very truly, yours,