War of the Rebellion: Serial 081 Page 0239 Chapter LII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, June 20, 1864 - 10.30 a. m.

Major-General BIRNEY:

Unless there is some military object than mere annoyance to the enemy, I would prefer not shelling the town.

GEO. G. MEADE,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND CORPS, June 20, 1864.

General MEADE:

Shelling the town seems to compel the enemy to cease firing. I will order the firing on our front to cease. The enemy commenced the artillery firing on us.

D. B. BIRNEY,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, June 20, 1864 - 10.45 a. m.

Major-General BIRNEY,

Commanding Second Corps:

Your dispatch received. The commanding general considers it satisfactory. Shelling the town to stop the firing of the enemy's batteries is a legitimate military operation, and may be resorted to whenever necessary. The relief of the Second Corps by the Sixth and Ninth Corps will not take place until after dark.

A. A. HUMPHREYS,

Major-General and Chief of Staff.

SECOND CORPS, June 20, 1864 - 11.15 a. m.

General S. WILLIAMS:

I will send in a list of prisoners as accurately made as possible. There is no doubt, however, but that the First Division lost several hundred. The matter is now being thoroughly investigated.

D. B. BIRNEY,

Major-General.

SECOND CORPS, June 20, 1864 - 11.15 a. m.

General HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff:

Can you inform me as to flag of truce? Toward morning, under the fog, I got off more of my wounded, advancing my picket-line. The enemy did not fire, but their officer called out to retire, or they would; that if we wanted to take off dead and wounded to send a flag of truce.

D. B. BIRNEY,

Major-General.