WAR DEPARTMENT, U. S. MILITARY RAILROADS,
Washington, D. C., December 18, 1862.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
SIR: You will please find inclosed copy of telegrams this day sent to Major-General Burnside and W. W. Wright, superintendent Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad.
Yours, very respectfully,
In Charge Construction and Operation U. S. Military Railroads.
DECEMBER 18, 1862.
Colonel Clarke reports by letter that there is great difficulty in procuring hands for the work at Aquia; that labor is scarce and high. If there is no other important service for them to perform, I would suggest that one regiment of the engineer troops, or, perhaps, one brigade, be sent to Aquia Creek, to assist in finishing the new wharf and connecting railroad. They can cut piles, load and handle timber, and grade road. They should report to W. W. Wright, who will have instructions as to the dispositions to be made of them.
DECEMBER 18, 1862.
W. W. WRIGHT,
If any engineer troops are sent to you, place as many as can be employed under charge of Anderson, to construct new road, cut piles, and load lumber. Clarker's men, of whom the advance guard will leave to-day, will be best employed upon the wharf. I will give you further and more specific instructions by letter.
Washington, December 18, 1862.
You will immediately take measures for the protection of Harper's Ferry, as directed by General Burnside. Your forces will be promptly concentrated to resist any movements of the enemy. General Kelley will co-operate with you.
H. W. HALLECK,
WASHINGTON, December 19, 1862.
Come, of course, if in your own judgment it is safe to do so.
HEADQUARTERS FIRST CAVALRY BRIGADE, December 19, 1862-12.05 o'clock.
GENERAL: The scouts to whom I alluded to-day came from Warrenton Junction and Catlett's Station one week ago yesterday. They saw