in the direction of Strasburg and Front Royal. Eighteen sick rebels fell into the hands of General Couch. The commanding general has just ordered one division of General Couch's command to the point where the Paris and Piedmont road crossers the road from Upperville to Barbee's. He desires you to return by the orderly who carries this a report of the condition of affairs in your front.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. D. RUGGLES,
Colonel and Assistant Chief of Staff.
GEINESVILLE, November 5, 1862-6.30 p. m.
I arrived here this evening, and found the troops in the following positions: General Schurz's division at Thoroughfare Gap; General Steinwehr's at Carter's Switch, and General Stahel's at Gainesville. The cavalry is posted at Bristoe Station, Greenwich, New Baltimore, and Buckland Mills. To-day, at 2.30, our cavalry at New Baltimore was attacked by 1,500 of the enemy's cavalry and four pieces of artillery, but [they were] repulsed and pursued toward Warrenton by Colonel Wyndham and four pieces of our flying artillery. General Sickles is stationed at Manassas Junction. In case of and advance movement, can I dispose of General Sickles' troops or not, provided I find it necessary and in our common interest? From General McClellan I received the following dispatch:
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, [November] 4, [1862.]
General McClellan directs me to inform you that General Burnside's command will to-morrow occupy the line from Piedmont to Salem. Reynolds will be in rear of, and to the left of, Burnside, on the line from Rectortown to White Plains. Franklin will be on the pike east of Upperville. Couch at Ashby's and Porter at Snicker's Gap. Pleasonton, with two brigades of cavalry, is ordered to push forward to Chester Gap, and on the road thence to Culpeper Court-House. Bayard, with his brigade, will take position in front of Salem. Headquarters will be on the road from Millville to Rectortown, near Rectortown. The general wishes you to be prepared to move on Warrenton as soon as you receive orders to do so. Please have a staff officer at headquarters to-morrow night to receive orders for the next day, and communicate through him the full position and condition of your command, as well as the condition of the railroad in your rear.
A. V. COLBURN,
HEADQUARTERS DEFENSES OF WASHINGTON, November 5, 1862-8.15 p. m.
Commanding Eleventh Corps, Gainesville:
Your telegram received. The major-general commanding instructs me to say that you must apply to General McClellan for authority to dispose of General Sickles' troops in case of necessity.
Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General.