AUGUST 25, [1862.] (Received 10.15 a. m.)
The following is just received from General Sykes. Shall be up in a few minutes and then decide what shall be done, and inform you:
25TH-10 a. m.
No Federal pickets from Rappahannock to Barnett's. Rebel horse and foot (two regiments) at Rappahannock at 8 p. m. last evening. A picket of Rhode Island cavalry at Rappahannock last night. Messengers came last night from Pope to withdraw the cavalry at Keley's Ford, and they have left. A picket of Kearny's infantry are at Bealeton this morning at 7 a. m.
F. J. PORTER,
AUGUST 25, 1862.
As the reserve batteries arrive, let them camp at Falmouth till called for, and await instructions from Colonel Hunt or me. No other forage than a small quantity of hay and wheat in stacks to be had in this country. The provision wagons have been returned. The command have generally four days' rations. I hope, as I advance, arrangements will be made to procure rations of the parties near Rappahannock Station. Each command is in need of medical supplies and ambulances, as well as wagons.
F. J. PORTER,
August 25, -11.30 a. m.
GENERAL: Your note does not state for what length of time it is intended to hold this ford, which would decide the preparations necessary to hold the point. A thousand men and a battery of six pieces could hold the place against great odds, and a smaller party a shorter period. I would not think of leaving less than 500 infantry and a battery, with cavalry sufficient to patrol the roads in all directions, say 300 or 400. In any event, cavalry will be required. Is it intended for me or Colonel Warren to prepare the ground, or the officer left in command? Indeed, the preparations must depend on the party to be left and the time necessary to hold the ford.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
P. S.-Please have in mind that the river is fordable for foot and horse most anywhere.
AUGUST 25, 1862-a. m.
[General FITZ JOHN PORTER:]
GENERAL: A wagon from Warrenton Junction yesterday. Left there at 10 o'clock. Reports General Reynolds at that place with his co-