HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF WEST VIRGINIA,
Winchester, Va., May 2, 1864.
Colonel R. S. RODGERS,
Military Commanders, Martinsburg, W. Va.:
COLONEL: An a number of guerrillas and horse-thieves are infesting the road between Winchester and Martinsburg, stealing horses and molesting unprotected trains, you will please notify Captain Patton, assistant quartermaster, and Captain Salisbury, that they must not send out trains without an escort. When any trains are about to leave Martinsburg for this place, you will immediately notify me of the fact, that I may order a sufficient escort, unless you have a sufficient force to send with them, in which case your escort will accompany the trains to Bunker Hill, where a relief will be stationed or sent to come on with them. In the mean time you will not suffer any trains to leave Martinsburg for Winchester until you have a sufficient force to accompany them, or until some other definite arrangement has been made. Send all your dispatches of importance in cipher through Captain Mathews, who is an expert, and send all such dispatches and official letters to the lieutenant of the First New York (Veteran) Cavalry, commanding at Bunker Hill, who will transmit them to this place. Three cavalrymen are stationed half way between Martinsburg and Bunker Hill who will receive such letters, &c., and carry them to the officer in command at Bunker Hill. One hundred men will be sent to-night to Martinsburg with a train, who may return as escort with another train from there.
MARTINSBURG, W. VA.,
May 2, 1864-8.30 p. m.
[Captain THAYER MELVIN, Assistant Adjutant-General:]
CAPTAIN: You have no doubt heard of the train being robbed two miles this side of Darksville. The robbers, twelve in number, probably passed the Shenandoah at Snicker's Ferry. I am now without a single man mounted, and could not send a dispatch forward. There is undoubtedly a small band of guerrillas or horse thieves inside your lines, numbering perhaps fifty. They crossed into Maryland last night. You will see it is important that trains should have a small escort. I have been obliged to order the battery of artillery here into town, both for its own protection and that of the place against a dash through the streets.
ROBT. S. RODGERS,
HDQRS. DEPT. OF WASHINGTON, 22nd ARMY CORPS,
Washington, D. C., May 3, 1864.
General BRIGGS, Commanding Draft Rendezvous, Alexandria:
The companies of Massachusetts heavy artillery were sent to you for the purpose of relieving the Second Pennsylvania; use them for that purpose. General Burnside is very anxious for the Second Pennsylvania to come at once.
C. C. AUGUR,