approach, without meeting any of the enemy's forces, or noticing any signs of them. Their pickets were undoubtedly withdrawn at the commencement of the demonstration of my command.
J. H. WILSON,
P. S.-The patrol sent out on the road toward Coleman's Bridge (Gordonsville road) has just returned without seeing anything of the enemy. They heard that a small party of about 20 of the enemy's cavalry crossed the Little River to-day, and made their way toward Trinity Church, 2 1/2 miles from this point.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
May 26, 1864. (Received 8.30 p.m. 27th.)
Brigadier General H. W. BENAHM,
The commanding general directs that you proceed to Fortress Monroe, Va., with all the bridging material at your command, as hold yourself in readiness to proceed up the James River with the same at very short notice.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Washington, May 26, 1864.
Captain C. CLAPP,
On Tuesday, 17th instant, I received orders at 12 m. to fit out and hold in readiness for Belle Plain a train of twenty-four pontoons, with material for bridge. Soon after (say about 3 p.m.) received verbal orders at Engineer Depot to fit out a train of forty boats and material for Harper's Ferry. The train for Belle Plain was sent 10 a.m. 18th, pursuant to order to forward receive at 7 a.m. 18th. Train for Harper's Ferry left at 3.15 p.m. 18th instant, in charge of Captain Clarke and 40 men, of First District of Columbia Volunteers. Within order for this last train was only received by mail on the 19th instant.
WM. H. PETTES,
Colonel Fiftieth New York Engineers, Commanding Eng. Depot.
WASHINGTON, May 26, 1864-1.10 p.m.
Port Royal, Va.:
You can temporarily detain detachment of Eighth Illinois Cavalry. The regiment must, however, be reunited as soon as possible.
H. W. HALLECK,
Major-General and Chief of Staff.