War of the Rebellion: Serial 068 Page 0011 Chapter XLVIII. SOUTH SIDE OF THE JAMES.

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and have safely brought them to our present position. These were colored cavalry, and are now holding our advance pickets toward Richmond. General Kautz, with 3,000 cavalry from Suffolk, on the same day with our movement up James River, forced the Blackwater, burned the railroad brigade at Stony Creek, below Petersburg, cutting in two Beauregard's force at that point, and is now operating operation against Hicksford and Weldon. We have landed here, intrenched ourselves, destroyed many miles of railroad, and got a position which, with proper supplies, we can hold out against the whole of Lee's army. I have ordered up the supplies. Beauregard with a large potion of his command, was left south by the cutting of the railroads by Kautz. That portion which reached Petersburg under Hill I have whipped to-day, killing and wounding many, and taking many prisoners, after a severe and well-contested fight. general Grant will not be troubled with any further re-enforcements to Lee from Beauregard's force.

BENJ. F. BUTLER,

Major-General.

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

IN THE FIELD, NEAR CHESTER STATION, VA.,

May 12, 1864-3.30 p. m. (Via Fort Monroe.)

(Received 1.30 a. m. 13th.)

I am now pressing the enemy near Fort Darling. I have before me all the troops from North Carolina and South Carolina that have got up. beauregard's courier, captured this morning going to General hoke, in command of Drewry's Bluff, had dispatch that Beauregard would join him as soon as the rest of his troops came up. I have left General Gilmore to hold our entrenchments while General Smith demonstrates upon Drewry and the enemy's lines. While this demonstration is going on I have sent General Kautz with his cavalry force to cut the Danville railroad near Appomattox Station, and perhaps he can advance on James River. Will do all I can, but the country is a terrible one to operate in. Please communicate this to General Grant. He will see at once where we are.

B. F. BUTLER,

Major-General, Commanding.

Honorable E. M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

GENERAL BUTLER'S HEADQUARTERS,

May 17, 1864. (Received 8.30 p. m.)

On Thursday, May 12, as stated in my last dispatch, I sent out General Kautz, with orders to cut the Danville road, thoroughly destroy the iron bridge across the Appomattox, and then, if possible, to cut the canal on the James-the only remaining line of transportation to Richmond-and thence to across the Appomattox and cut the Weldon railroad at Hicksford, so as to imprison the transportation between Hicksford and Stony Creek, where it was obliged to be massed because of the former cutting at the latter place. To prevent Kautz