War of the Rebellion: Serial 040 Page 0014 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.

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HDQRS. SECOND REGIMENT, U. S. INFANTRY,

Camp near Falmouth, Va., January 31, 1863.

Lieutenant E. E. SELLERS,

A. A. A. G., Hdqrs. 2nd Brigadier, Sykes' Div.:

SIR: I have the honor respectfully to apply for orders to consolidate the companies of my regiment from nine to six. the average umber for duty, including non-commissioned officers, is 21 to each. There are but 7 officers disposable for company duty with the regiment.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

SALEM S. MARSH,

Captain Second Infantry, Commanding Regiment.

[Indorsements.]

HEADQUARTERS SECOND DIVISION, FIFTH CORPS,

February 1, 1863.

Approved, and respectfully forwarded. This step will have to be taken in all the old regiments under my command. It will promote efficiency and discipline.

GEO. SYKES,

Major-General, Commanding Division and Fifth Corps.

HEADQUARTERS CENTER GRAND DIVISION,

February 2, 1863.

Respectfully forwarded for the action of the War Department, and most strongly recommended. Some similar step is absolutely required to give efficiency to the skeleton force of Regulars now in the field. I would most respectfully request that authority be given to consolidate all the regiments each into the number of companies which the number of men on their muster-rolls would make at the war standard.

GEO. G. MEADE,

Major-General.

ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE,

Washington, D. C., February 7, 1863.

Respectfully referred to the commanding general of the Army of the Potomac for such orders as he may consider most conducive to the interest of the service.

By order:

ROBT. WILLIAMS,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

[FEBRUARY]--, 1863.

Granted.

J. H. [HOOKER.]

MARIETTA, [OHIO,] January 31, 1863.

General. E. P. SCAMMON, Charleston:

SIR: My own view has been that the best arrangement is that which keeps the troops as nearly as possible in one concentrated body, having detachments only to watch the line of communications, and act as advanced posts and scouts. I still think so, but have written General Wright for his opinion, in view of the reduction of the force, and will communicate with you as soon as I hear from him. A cordon of troops