War of the Rebellion: Serial 040 Page 0670 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.

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HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA,

Dublin, March 17, 1863.

General S. COOPER, Adjt. and Insp. General, Richmond, Va.:

GENERAL: By telegram of the 12th instant you informed me that Lieutenant-General Longstreet was ordered, on the 5th instant, to send back the troops taken from General Marshall and myself in December last. They have not yet arrived, and I have heard nothing more of them. General Lee has asked me for two regiments for temporary and special service. I have replied that if the Department will allow me to retain for a week the two regiments of Marshall's command, for service near the salt-works, I can give him the two regiments he desires. When Marshall's regiments were ordered to Richmond in December last, they were stationed this side of the salt-works, and I presume they will, unless otherwise ordered, return to their former station. Marshall informed me by letter, received yesterday, that he was the moving into Kentucky. He will probably be gone at least a month, perhaps longer, and will not be in position to receive or give orders to his two regiments when they arrive. No possible injury to the service or injustice to Marshall can result, so far as I can see, in giving me the command of his two regiments for a few weeks, for I shall station them immediately on the borders of his department, and very near where I presume he would locate them himself.

General Lee will probably communicate with you or the Secretary on this subject, and if the Department authorize him to take two of the four regiments, I recommend that he take the Fiftieth and Fifty-fourth Virginia, they being, I believe, the largest and best.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

SAM. JONES,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WESTERN VIRGINIA,

Dublin, March 17, 1863.

General R. E. LEE, Commanding, &c., near Fredericksburg, Va.:

GENERAL: It seems by a communication I have just now received from General Imboden, that he wishes you to send to him two specified regiments, the Twenty-fifth and Thirty-first (Virginia, I suppose), and that you cannot send them unless I can replace them temporarily in your army. Presuming that you will have received my letter of yesterday, in reply to yours of the 11th instant, before you receive this, I write to suggest the propriety of sending two of the regiment I mentioned yesterday directly to your army, and detaching the two regiments, Twenty-fifth and Thirty-first, for the temporary service under Imboden, as I presume, from his asking for them, that they are regarded as especially suited to the service he proposes to take them on. And if the Secretary, as I suggested yesterday, permits you to take two of the four regiments I mentioned, I recommend that you take the Fiftieth and Fifty-fourth Virginia, as I am inclined to think they are larger and perhaps better than the other two, and I am anxious, if this department is represented in your impending campaign, it may be well represented. The Fifty-fourth (Trigg's)) was in Marshall's command, but, as I explained yesterday, he will hardly need them for a month or six weeks.

With great respect, your obedient servant,

SAM. JONES,

Major-General.