War of the Rebellion: Serial 028 Page 0447 Chapter XXXI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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This makes it quite certain that there is a force of the enemy at Hedgesville, and, in view of this, the commanding general directs that you, without a moment's delay, order the division formerly commanded by Couch to march, via Williamsport, on the road to Hancock, and direct the officer in command to move rapidly during the night, and use every exertion to encounter and destroy the rebel forces said to be moving up the Potomac.

Please furnish the officer commanding the expedition with about 500 cavalry, and, if necessary, you are authorized to call upon General Averell for them, although it is believed that his horses are much jaded. General Averell for them, although it is believed that his horses are much jaded. General Kelley has been ordered to send some of his troops by rail to Hancock. The officer you send should keep his cavalry out on the opposite side of the river, and if the rebel forces are found near the railroad he should cross his command and give them battle, unless he has information that his forces are entirely too small for the purpose. This raid should not be allowed to go unpunished.

R. B. MARCY,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

October 18, 1862-12.30 p.m.

General B. F. KELLEY, Cumberland:

Your dispatch of 9.50 a.m. received. General Franklin has been ordered to send a division from his corps to Hancock immediately. The commanding general directs that you send all your available troops to Hancock by rail as soon as possible, keeping the cars at Hancock, that you may be able to move the troops rapidly along the road, if it should be necessary. Send to Hancock 15,000 rations for the division from Franklin's corps.

R. B. MARCY,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

October 18, 1862.

COMMANDING OFFICER, Hancock, Md.:

Information has been received that on Thursday, 16th, a number of regiments of infantry and six pieces of artillery passed from Martinsburg to Hedgesville. It is also reported that all of Jackson's army is in Hedgesville, and that they intend going to Hancock. The commanding general directs that you inform the officer commanding cavalry in your vicinity of this report, and require him to be on the alert for all signs of the enemy across the river in the direction indicated. You will please exercise the greatest vigilance in your power, and communicate at once any information you may obtain.

R. B. MARCY,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

October 18, 1862-8 p.m.

General B. F. KELLEY, Cumberland, Md.:

Please adopt the course you suggest in your dispatch of 4 p.m., regarding the disposition of your troops, and keep me advised of all the