War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0096 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

Lovettsville, July 18, 1863-7 p. m.

(Received 8. 45 p. m.)

Major-General HALLECK,

General-in-Chief:

Four infantry corps, the Reserve Artillery, and two, divisions of cavalry have crossed the Potomac at Berlin and Harper's Ferry last evening and to-day. The rest of the army will cross to-morrow. The division of cavalry which was sent forward yesterday have reported the occupation of Snicker's Gap after a brisk skirmish with the enemy, taking a few prisoners, who reported themselves belonging to White's guerrillas. I send forward to-day another division, to take possession of the gaps as far as Chester Gap. A cavalry force, two brigades, will be sent to-morrow through Aldie to cover and guard the Orange and Alexandria Railroad to Warrenton Junction and Warrenton. I would be glad to be advised how much of the road can be protected by the troops from Washington. I have left Brigadier-General Lockwood, with Maryland troops recently under his command, added to the force previously under General Naglee. making over 4, 000 men in all, to hold Harper's Ferry, and directed him to report to General Couch, whom I have directed to assume command of the defense of the Upper Potomac until more definite intelligence is obtained of the movements of the enemy. I have received no intelligence of any kind of the enemy beyond the fact reported by the cavalry sent in pursuit, that he was moving on Winchester. Scouts have been sent in all directions, but none have as yet reported. I see by the public journals it is intimated that a part of Bragg's army has been sent to Virginia. I presume if any reliable intelligence of this fact reaches you, I shall be fully advised. My present plan is to move rapidly to Warrenton, open my communication by the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, and then be governed by the position and movements of the enemy.

Geo. G. MEADE,

Major-General.

WASHINGTON, D. C., July 18, 1863.

Major-General MEADE,

Army of the Potomac:

You need have no fear of Bragg, Johnston, or Beauregard. Not a man will join Lee. His forces can only be re-enforced by a part of

D. H. Hill's command, and even then they will be far inferior in numbers to your army.

H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

Lovettsville, July 19, 1863-10 a. m.

(Received 10. 15 a. m.)

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief:

I am very anxious to have a competent commander for the Second Corps, made vacant by the wounding of Hancock. The very valu-