Belle Plain. They have not yet arrived. General Woodbury desires to know if they have yet started, and when. Telegraph us at General Burnside's headquarters, Army of the Potomac.
H. W. BOWERS,
HEADQUARTERS ENGINEER BRIGADE,
Camp near Fredericksburg, Va., November 25, 1862.
Fiftieth Regiment New York Volunteers,
Near Navy-Yard Bridge, Washington, D. C.:
Send to Belle Plain immediately 30 pontoons, with equipments, complete, in addition to those ordered through Lieutenant Johnson. Also 12 pontoon wagons.
D. P. WOODBURY,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers.
HDQRS. FIFTEENTH Regiment NEW YORK VOL. ENGINEERS,
Camp near Falmouth, Va., November 25, 1862.
General D. P. WOODBURY,
Commanding Engineer Brigade:
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that on Saturday, the 15th instant, at the time your order to move reached me, my command was distributed in the following manner: Companies C and K, under command of Captain Chester, were at Fort Albany, Va., superintending the works in that quarter; Company A, under Captain Bogan, guarding the Anacostia (upper) Bridge; Company D, the Navy-yard Bridge; Companies H and E were stationed near Fort Meigs, working on new fortifications, and Company G encamped near Fort Baker, building bridges.
At 12.30 o'clock on the 15th, I received your order to embark four companies. Not being willing to delay the transport, I at once dispatched Companies B, F, and I, which still remained in camp, and embarked them, with tools, from the Sixth street wharf, Washington, by 4 p.m. Meantime the scattered companies were ordered in and the men rations for a march.
On Sunday,at 5 p.m., I embarked with six companies of board the steamer Hero, leaving Company K to guard the wagon train, which, by order, was to come by land. Having started with a raft of forty-eight pontoon boats in tow, we steamed as far as the Arsenal, where, the water being shallow, we grounded, and could not get afloat until 5 p.m. Monday, from the impossibility of procuring a tug to pull the steamer off. We dropped down the Potomac as far as Fort Washington, when the captain, not venturing to proceed with so large a tow in the night, anchored.
By daylight of the 18th, we were under way, and at 3 p.m. anchored 3 miles from Belle Plain. As no other means of disembarking presented themselves, I moved the men onto the pontoon raft, and towed the flotilla to the shore.
On the morning of the 19th, agreeably to the order to assist the commissary and quartermaster, I laid a pier of pontoons for each, and commenced a more permanent pier for the commissary, besides assisting in