HEADQUARTERS CAVALRY CORPS,
July 31, 1863.
Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: In obedience to instructions, I have the honor to report that the disposition of the troops of this corps is as follows:
First Division, General Buford commanding, near Rappahannock Station. This division pickets the river from Kelly's Ford to Sulphur Springs.
Second division, General Gregg commanding, near Amissville, pickets from Sulphur Springs to Gaines' Cross-Roads, via Jefferson.
Third Division, General Custer commanding, has just been relieved at Amissville, and is under orders for Warrenton Junction to obtain supplies and refit.
A brigade of the Second Division is now scouting on our lift toward Hartwood Church and the Occoquan. This brigade will be relieved by the Third Division on its arrival at Warrenton Junction.
The batteries in reserve belonging to the horse brigades serving with the corps are encamped near the railroad, between this and the Junction.
The Second Division is ordered to scout in the direction of Sperryville and Little Washington, and also toward Culpeper.
A detachment of 50 men of the Sixth Cavalry are kept scouting toward New Baltimore, Thoroughfare Gap, and Salem for guerrillas.
Nothing new from the front since last report submitted to your of the reconnaissance between the forks of the Rappahannock.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WASHINGTON, July 31, 1863.
GENERAL: At my interview with General Meade, I expressed it as my opinion that, if the Eleventh Corps to be broken up, it ought to be done in a manner as little as possible offensive to the feelings of the officers and men. If two divisions were to be attached to other corps, the third, becoming independent, under the command of the ranking officer in the corps, should at least not be sent to the rear to guard the baggage, but be assigned to some work not only in fact but also in appearance more important and Honorable .
My proposition to General Meade was to send me with my division, each is reduced to less than 2, 400 muskets, and the artillery formerly attached to my command, into the Shenandoah Valley, to observe the movements of the enemy there, and to prevent him from gathering and carrying off this year's crops. The Government would then, perhaps, see fit to give me General Milroy's late command, with so much of the troops lately belonging thereto as can be gathered for that purpose.
General Meade declared that if the breaking up of the Eleventh Corps was offensive to my feelings, he would leave the corps as it was; but if I was satisfied by the arrangement proposed by myself, he wound favor it, especially as he deemed the occupation of the Shenandoah Valley for many reasons quite important.