War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 1071 Chapter XXXI. CAMPAIGN IN THE KANAWHA VALLEY, W.VA.

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very slight. The rapidity of our advance saved the city from flames. We had marched in exactly one week from Giles Court-House to this place, fighting for more than half a day at Fayette Court-House, and again, on the next morning, at Cotton Hill and Gauley, and skirmishing all the way to this place. In these rapid victories over a numerous enemy, six regiments strong, all furnished with artillery and cavalry, besides inflicting a great loss in men, we have captured immense amounts of wagons and horses, inventories of which we are now taking, and which will doubtless amount to at least $1,000,000. In the rapidity of our movements we have left the greater part of our train in rear, which has caused us to pause at this place. The enemy, fresher than we, and within 50 miles of the Ohio, have so much the advance that it is useless to pursue him farther. Roads from Guyandotte, Point Pleasant, and Ravenswood, on the Ohio River, converge at this place so that if I move forward on any of these roads the enemy could use the other to get in my rear. Here, then, I will pause until our supply train reaches us-perhaps until I hear from you. If I advance toward the valley of Virginia, as you instructed me in a former letter, I shall have all these roads in my rear and between my column and trains, besides the difficult ranges of mountains running across my course, and with very bad roads over them. This valley, however, I can hold with its magnificent crop of growing corn and its salt. The salt-works prove uninjured, preserved by our activity from fire, and only lack labor to supply the whole Confederacy. The negroes, by whom they were formerly worked, have been carried off by the enemy. I think that many recruits will be added to my command here if I hold the country long enough, while a rapid march through the valley of the Kanawha would only expose it to fresh invasions from the enemy.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.

Hon. GEORGE W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.

[Indorsement.]

Respectfully submitted to the President. If General Floyd's command be turned over to the Confederate States Government and be filled up to a full brigade, it might hold the valley of the Kanawha. General Loring could then operate northwardly. I will prepare and submit a letter of instructions to him.

G. W. R.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA, Charleston, W. Va., September 15, 1862.

SIR: The reception and welcome which the army received in this valley were so cordial that I deemed it politic to issue a proclamation of the temperate character of that which I inclose. I trust that it will meet with the approbation of the Government, as it does of all the citizens of the country, especially our firm and discreet friends.

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

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.

Hon. GEORGE W. RANDOLPH,

Secretary of War.