FIFTH CORPS, May 21, 1864-6.30 a. m.
Just received following:
HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, FIFTH CORPS-6.3O A. M.
The enemy is in force in my front, his artillery in plain sight, and before I advance my pickets, I desire this fact to be known. A far stronger force than my picket-line is visible.
G. K. WARREN,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, May 21, 1864-6.30 a. m.
The object of advancing your pickets is to ascertain as far as such an operation will admit, the force and position of the enemy. If you are satisfied the enemy is in as full force as he was yesterday, and are positive of this without advancing your pickets, they need not be advanced, although no objection is seen to their being pushed out even under the above condition.
General Warren directs that your pickets fire away occasionally at the enemy's, and ascertain all they can and report.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. S. MARVIN, JR.,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, May 21, 1864-7.30 a. m.
Commanding Fifth Corps:
The major-general commanding directs that if you are not attacked before 10 o'clock this morning you withdraw at that hour and proceed to the Telegraph road at Massaponax Church and follow that road, crossing the Po at Stanard's Mill, and take position on the right bank of the Po. If practicable, you will relieve the portion of the Sixth Corps serving with you before will drawing. Be careful not to pass across or on the edge of the open fields of Anderson's farm, as they are in full view of the enemy. Upon withdrawing, you will direct Major Forsyth to report to General Wright. At Massaponax Church you will find Lieutenant-Colonel Pope, with a cavalry detachment, who is directed to report to you. You will use him in establishing and keeping up communication between your right and General Burnside's command. General Burnside is in position on the left of Wright.
A. A. HUMPHREYS,
Major-General and Chief of Staff.