rangers) is said to have recently returned from Raleigh, with full authority to arrest or call into service all persons not exempt from military service. A medical examiner accompanies him, also a force (strength not stated) from Bertie or Hertford County. They are posted back of Edenton, and the citizens of that town are in consternation, having mostly fled to the woods. I have sent a gunboat there to afford protection to all who desire it, another to cruise in the Chowan from Dillard's to Winton, and perhaps to Riddick's Ferry.
A considerable force from the Blackwater, Louisiana Zouaves, or Tigers, variously stated at 300 to 800, is in the direction of south Mills, to cover the conscription, and prevent a movement from Norfolk. A portion of this force is now in the neighborhood of Hertford.
I communicate this without passing through the headquarters of General Peck, and recommend that, if practicable, a cavalry reconnaissance be made from your direction, to disturb, if possible, the operations of the enemy, and to enable the citizens to escape.
My only means of transportation is required to take this to Roanoke, but on its return I shall send a force of infantry to Edenton or Dillard's, as circumstances may demand. The detachments will be very small, having but few men fit for service.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. WESSELLS,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Commanding.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
October 8, 1863-2 p. m. (Received 2. 15 p. m.)
Seven deserters from Anderson's division, Ewell's [A. P. Hill's] corps, came in yesterday evening. They disprove the rumor that this division had been sent away, and say that no detachments from Lee's army have been made since the departure of Longstreet's corps.
GEO. G. MEADE,
HDQRS. THIRD DIVISION, CAVALRY CORPS,
October 8, 1863.
Lieutenant Colonel C. ROSS SMITH,
Chief of Staff, Cavalry Corps:
COLONEL: I found this morning an officer and sergeant from the First Vermont Cavalry, who are acquainted with the road from Madison Court-House to Gordonsville and Stanardsville. One of them was taken prisoner and went by way of Gordonsville to Richmond last year.
This morning my picket at Russell's Ford was attacked, but the enemy were immediately driven back. My loss was 1 man killed.
Brigadier General of Vols., Commanding Third Division.