General Newton keeps a bridge-head force on the other side, so as to give him time to perfect the arrangement for the defense of the railroad bridge and ford.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. A. HUMPHREYS,
Major-General, Chief of Staff.
WARRENTON JUNCTION, August 18, 1863.
Chief of Staff:
Two deserters just came in. They left Culpeper Court-House the 8th instant. Longstreet's and Ewell's forces were reported that time at or near Fredericksburg; Hill's corps, between the Rapidan and Orange Court-House; Stuart's cavalry, at Culpeper and Brandy Station.
They met Mosby's force yesterday at Upperville, ready for a raid. Hearing at 12 o'clock of the approach of our cavalry, they were ordered to meet to-day at Rector's Cross-Roads. The deserters cannot tell when Mosby intends to make the attack. The deserters will be sent to general headquarters.
[Note on original:] General King informed.
HARTWOOD, VA., August 18, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that I went yesterday to Falmouth for the purpose to observe the rebel position on the old battle-ground at Fredericksburg. I could not see any large force of rebels there, except one regiment of cavalry, one battery of light artillery, and an equal force of infantry. The infantry is scattered on the opposite bank of the Rappahannock and fire at every Union soldier they see on this side. Previous to my coming, they fired at our cavalry, and then they fired at me.
They have brought two pieces of artillery nearer the river where our cavalry approached the town, and I noticed that they were moving off loaded wagons from Fredericksburg, as if in anticipation of our crossing.
The inhabitants of Falmouth seem to be - and I think that they really are - totally ignorant of the rebels' position and doings, and they say that only small scouting parties of the rebels are allowed to come over on this side of the river. Our cavalry did not occupy Falmouth the day before yesterday. The rebels have infantry force at Banks' Ford.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Captain, and Acting Signal Officer.
[P. S.]- I submitted a similar report of General Kilpatrick immediately after my return.