War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0627 Chapter XXX. CORRESPONDENCE,ETC.-UNION.

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FORT MONROE, April 17, 1863.

Major-General PECK:

Colonel Gurney is in command. He is just leaving. It is a regularly organized division. Foster being re-enforced, Hill cannot ---* Can you not now act on the offensive? With your prudence I should fear no evil result. The enemy is full of stratagem and will need careful watching. I am just off for Nansemond.

JOHN A. DIX,

Major-General.

SUFFOLK, VA., April 17, 1863.

General VIELE:

We hold everything up to this time. Both my flanks are threatened. Longstreet is pressing on the river. He is building batteries at the mouth of the West Branch. Only one boat is with me. My impression is he cannot force a passage. Much skirmishing on all the avenues of approach.

Press on the men. Advise me of everything you hear.

JOHN J. PECK,

Major-General.

NEW BERNE, N. C., April 17, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief:

Being about to start with a relieving force to raise the siege of Washington, I learned that the enemy had evacuated the batteries in front of Washington, and deserters say that the cause was that they were ordered to re-enforce the army in Virginia. I shall march myself with my force in pursuit and endeavor to overtake the enemy.

J. G. FOSTER,

Major-General.

SUFFOLK, VA., April 17, 1863.

General DIX:

I expect they will attempt to force a crossing somewhere in the darkness. Have taken great pains and every precaution. One of the railways is complete, so deserters say. All activity along the river. Their sharpshooters are very numerous. Have you any? We felt the enemy to-day on the South Quay and found his force large. Will more children [cavalry] arrive?

JOHN J. PECK,

Major-General.

SUFFOLK, April 17, 1863.

Major-General DIX:

Your message is not complete. It asks if I can act offensively; also says you fear evil will result, as enemy is full of stratagems. Will you repeat it? My opinion is that we shall have all we can do to hold the Nansemond and Dismal Swamp and Pasquotank. I am pressing them with light troops, and brisk firing is heard in several directions.

JOHN J. PECK,

Major-General.

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*Message incomplete as sent. No record of it as received.

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