three brigades, each commanded by the senior colonel; the first comprised the troops west of Oakland; the second those at New Creek, and the third at Cumberland and stations east of that place. This arrangement worked, admirably in practice; but as many of the regiments have been removed to points farther east, as the emergencies have required, and entire reorganization will have to be directed.
There is no general officer on duty in this district save General Kenly. There should, I think, be a general officer assigned to the command of the western division, with headquarters, say, at Cumberland, Md., who would form the brigades as the number of troops and the territory occupied might require. I have heard General Lockwood mentioned favorably, and would be pleased, indeed, if he could be assigned to duty with me.
Brigadier-General Milroy was assigned by Major-General Cox, commanding District of Western Virginia, to the command of the Cheat Mountain Division, composed of three brigades, numbering about nine regiments of infantry. When it was believed that the Confederates were approaching Winchester and the railroad, in November, General Milroy was ordered to my assistance, and reported to me with, I believe, seven regiments, the balance of his force remaining on duty in his old district. The general was about to resume operations, according to the orders and original programme of General Cox, when the order was received from the General-in-Chief assigning me to the "command of the troops for the defense of the Upper Potomac," and this order being construed to include the forces of Milroy, then in Hampshire and Hardy Counties, Virginia, Major-General Cox directed him to report to me for duty on or about the 25th of December, which was done accordingly. No report of his forces has been received.
General Milroy might with propriety be assigned to command in the interior, and act in concert with the forces more directly assigned to the protection of the road, and might either have a separate command or form a portion of defenses of the Upper Potomac, as you may desire.
Hoping that these views may meet with the concurrence of the major-general commanding, I remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
B. F. KELLEY,
WASHINGTON, D. C., January 8, 1863
Brigadier General WILLIAM A. HAMMOND,
Surgeon-General, U. S. Army:
SIR: In obedience to orders from the Secretary of War, dated December 31, I proceeded to Falmouth and instituted inquiries into the state of the medical and surgical supplies and sanitary condition of the Army of the Potomac.
There is very general complaint of want of supplies necessary to the health of the soldiers and to the effective administration of the field hospitals. The supply table, substituted by the director of the Army of the Potomac for that authorized by regulation, is considered insufficient, by regimental surgeons, some articles being in excess and others deficient.
The regimental hospitals are very destitute of furniture of all kinds, and the surgeons say they can get none. At this time of year bed-sacks are indispensable and should be furnished. The surgeons say they can