War of the Rebellion: Serial 031 Page 0948 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD. AND PA. Chapter XXXIII.

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BALTIMORE, MD. January 5, 1863.

The PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:

The last rail was laid, completing the reconstruction of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, to-day. Trains will run through from Baltimore to Wheeling to-morrow.

ROBT. C. SCHENCK,

Major-General, Commanding.

WINCHESTER, VA., January 5, 1863.

Brigadier-General KELLEY:

DEAR SIR: Yours of this morning, by Major Russell, was received this evening. I had grave doubts of Washburn's safety from the time I left him there, and I feel greatly relieved to learn that Colonel Mulligan has got to Moorefield with his fighting Irish boys. I have no fears of their safety now. Had I a few more regiments here I would send a brigade at once to Wardensville, to cut off Jones; but with the small force I have here now, a sufficient force detached from here to meet Jones would endanger the safety of this place. But the temptation is very great, and hard to resist from prudential motives.

You do me the honor to ask me to write you my views fully. I will guarantee to hold Winchester and the country to Mount Jackson, and to guard securely the four gaps of Manassas, Ashby, Gregory, and Snicker, and to keep the road from Winchester to Martinsburg and Charlestown open, if I have sufficient force.