War of the Rebellion: Serial 045 Page 0886 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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which would probably be idle during the summer. I did not intend to impose upon your generosity, nor desire you to send me troops needed in your own department, thought I want every man I can get.

The Thirty-fourth [Virginia] Battalion has been ordered to rejoin General Jenkins, who is serving in the Valley, and whom I regard as temporarily detached from your department. The Nineteenth Virginia Cavalry is in a good position to watch the force of the enemy, of which your scouts inform you. You will then have the Thirty-seventh Virginia Battalion and the Eighth Cavalry Regiment besides, which I hope will be in a condition to render effectual service.

The transportation captured will be on duty in the Valley in collecting supplies.

Your note from Colonel [W. P.] Thompson I have forwarded to General Imboden for his information.

With best wishes, I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. E. LEE,



Honorable JAMES A. SEDDON,

Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:

I had the honor to receive yesterday your letters of the 9th and 10th instant.

You can realize the difficulty of operating in any offensive movement with this army if it has to be divided to cover Richmond. It seems to me useless to attempt it with the force against it. You will have seen its effective strength by the last returns. I grieve over the desolation of the country and the distress to innocent women and children, occasioned by spiteful excursions of the enemy, unworthy of a civilized nation. It can only be prevented by local organizations and bold measures. As regards cavalry, I have not half as much as I require to keep back the enemy`s mounted force in my front. If I weaken it, I fear a heavier calamity may befall us than that we wish to avoid. I have not yet heard of Colonel R. [H.] Anderson`s regiment of cavalry leaving Georgia, or Colonel [J. H.] Clanton`s from Alabama, which I understood had been ordered by the President some time since. General D. H. Hill offered to send me a North Carolina regiment. It had better be ordered to Richmond. I believe the expedition reported to General Elzey as marching up the Peninsula is one of those raids. All accounts agree that the Federal forces at Suffolk, Yorktown, Gloucester, &c., have been reduced, and General Hooker re-enforced. Some of General Dix`s men were captured on the 11th at Fredericksburg. I think the enemy had been mystified as to our movements until the publication of my dispatch to the Department of the cavalry fight on the 9th, and the comments and assertions of some of our Richmond papers. The day after the fight everything subsided to their former lines. Yesterday movements were discovered up the Rappahonnock, and pickets report they continued all night. I send down Colonel Long to give an exact account of the reported movements of the enemy up the Peninsula. He will inform you of the condition of affairs here.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. E. LEE,