Major-General Burnside will move forward his own corps in support. Major-General Smith will hold his command ready to take advantage of any success on his left, and will in the meantime threaten the enemy and draw his attention by all means in his power. He will also hold his command ready to move to the left if required.
By command of Major-General Meade:
HEADQUARTERS ENGINEER BRIGADE, June 16, 1864-3 p.m.
GENERAL: I am informed, though possibly it may not be correct, that there are still 5,000 cattle to cross over. As they impair the bridge so much (now greatly worn), far more than artillery does, I would suggest that they be made to swim the river, as was done at Edward's Ferry, for I fear that they will not only greatly delay the trains, but may break the bridge down if allowed to cross. I have felt compelled to forbid their crossing the bridge until your directions are given on this subject.
H. W. BENHAM.
HEADQUARTERS SIXTH ARMY CORPS,
June 16, 1864-5.45 p.m (Received 6.20 p.m.)
General H. W. BENHAM:
Yours of 3 p.m. is this moment received. I had arranged that the cattle should be ferried over, but since then I have been ordered to move two divisions by transports, via City Point, and one by your bridge. General Ferrero is here with his command, and I have instructed [him] to remain till the cavalry and trains have crossed, and to give you timely notice of his own crossing, to enable you to prepare for removing the bridge. I have also told him the arrangements I had made for crossing the cattle and advised his carrying it out as far as may be. Keep the regiment you have till everything has crossed, and then please order the commanding officer to rejoin his division at the front. General Ferrero will communicate with you. He takes my present headquarters.
H. G. WRIGHT,
HEADQUARTERS ENGINEER BRIGADE, June 16, 1864-5 p.m.
In the orders just received from you no mention is made of any force as obliged to protect the taking up of the bridge, as this was assigned to you by the original order of General Meade of 9.30 p.m. yesterday. Will you please direct specially that the duty shall be performed by some officer in you place, directing him to give me notice at what time I can take up the bridge, and remaining to protect this operation.
H. W. BENHAM,