War of the Rebellion: Serial 068 Page 0534 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N.C. Chapter XLVIII.

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HEADQUARTERS SECOND CORPS, May 8, 1864-5.50 p.m.

General HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff:

The enemy are advancing a line of skirmishers nearly parallel to the Catharpin road. Two brigades have been ordered forward to assist the one already holding the advanced position. The attack has just commenced. General Hancock desires General Gibbon to be held in readiness to aid him if necessary. The attack is not very strong as yet.

N. MICHLER,

Captain, Engineers.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND CORPS,

May 8, 1864-5.20 p.m. (Received 6.30 p.m.)

GENERAL: The commander of the brigade advanced on the Catharpin road reports at 4.15 p.m.:

I sent 100 [men] across the Po River on a reconnaissance. They have just returned without loss, meeting only cavalry and artillery. A long column of infantry, artillery, and baggage train has been observed [moving] due south. A contraband boy, who has just come in my lines, says that it is Longstreet's corps, and that they were moving to Spotsylvania Court-House. He states further that Lomax's and Wheaton's [Wickham's] brigades of cavalry are opposite my position. These brigades, he states, were at Spotsylvania.

WINF'D S. HANCOCK,

Major-General of Volunteers.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS,

Todd's Tavern, May 8, 1864-6 p.m.

General WILLIAMS,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Army of the Potomac:

GENERAL: The skirmishers of my advanced brigade have been attacked on the right flank by a line of skirmishers. Apparently, so far, the attack is not strong, and a cloud of smoke is going to the right on the Catharpin road as if some cavalry were going to our right from this attack. I will further advise you as the matter progresses.

WINF'D S. HANCOCK,

Major-General of Volunteers, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS, May 8, 1864-6.30 p.m.

[General A. A. HUMPHREYS:]

GENERAL: I have just received the report that a column of infantry is coming down the Brock road and filing to the left, through the open country, one-half mile in front of our lines. An infantry scout I sent out about an hour ago has just returned, and says he saw a line of cavalry skirmishers coming down the Brock road, followed by a line of dismounted men, which may be infantry or cavalry. I am making the best preparation possible to meet the case.

WINF'D S. HANCOCK,

Major-General of Volunteers.