War of the Rebellion: Serial 018 Page 0916 Chapter XXIV. OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD.

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It is intended that all your batteries go by rail.

Respectfully, &c.,


HEADQUARTERS, July 18, 1862.

Brigadier General J. E. B. STUART, Commanding Cavalry:

GENERAL: A letter just received from General Jackson states that from information received he inclines to the belief that the enemy in withdrawing from Fredericksburg, and his destination is Gordonsville and that quarter. He is therefore moving nearer that point, and has been obliged to withdraw his cavalry from hangover Junction and the protection of the railroad. Former accounts indicate a large force of the enemy concentrated at Fredericksburg, but whether it was his intention to move by water to re-enforce McClellan or to march by land upon Richmond was not so clear. I wish you to send some cavalry at least as far north as hangover Junction or the North Anna, to watch the movements of the enemy and give protection to the railroad and country, and endeavor to get information of the enemy at Fredericksburg, if possible, his intention, strength, &c. It is also an object to encourage our people to bring up from the Rappahannock Valley corn and grain of all kinds. Endeavor to spare your horses as much as possible, and charge your officers to look to their comfort and that of the men.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. E. LEE,


HEADQUARTERS, July 23, 1862.

Major General THOMAS J. JACKSON,

Commanding Valley District:

GENERAL: I have received your letter* of the 21st, with inclosure. I am in doubt as to the position and numbers of the enemy in your front and on the Rappahannock, and can get no clew as to his intentions. I am inclined to the belief that General McClellan is being re-enforced to the extent of the means of his Government and that he will continue to be so. A force will be kept in front of Washington to guard its approach, and General Pope, I presume, is charged with this duty. His main body, I suspect, is not far from Manassas, that being his best front, and his scouts and skirmishers are sent out for plunder, provisions, and devastation. I have not been as yet able to send you re-enforcements. Indeed, unless General Pope was within striking distance, or you were prepared with transportation,, provisions, &c., for a further aggressive movement, I saw no object. I have not hard your strength or condition, or what favorable prospect you saw for a blow. The troops have not yet arrived from the south. General McClellan is feeling stronger, is uneasy in his position, and no doubt feels the necessity to advance upon Richmond. He is making daily demonstrations to deceive us or test our strength. Under these circumstances I am reluctant to weaken the force around Richmond without seeing


*Not found.