War of the Rebellion: Serial 081 Page 0599 Chapter LII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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tion destitute of water has gone to Jordan's Point, on the James, to recuperate. A deserter yesterday reported the troops that were seen to pass into Petersburg the day before as Mahone's division, which had been sent to support the cavalry in the attack upon Wilson. I understand a late Richmond paper claims the capture of 1,600 prisoners and 10 guns from Wilson. No report has been received from General Wilson since his return.

GEO. G. MEADE,

Major-General, Commanding.

GENERAL GRANT'S HEADQUARTERS,

City Point, July 3, 1864-10.30 a.m.

Major General GEORGE G. MEADE:

Do you think it possible, by a bold and decisive attack, to break through the enemy's center, say in General Warren's front somewhere? If this is determined on we would want full preparations made in advance so there should be no balk. Roads would have to be made to bring the troops up rapidly; batteries constructed so as to bring the greatest amount of artillery to bear possible on the points of attack; and all to the right of the attack strengthened to be held by the smallest number of men. I have felt unwilling to give the troops any violent exercise until we get rain to settle the dust, and now, even if we should get rain, all operations except preparations will have to be deferred until the cavalry is again fit for service. I send this to get you views on the subject. If it is not attempted we will have to give you an army sufficient to meet most of Lee's forces and march around Petersburg and come in from above. This probably could not be done before the arrival of the Nineteenth Corps.

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

July 3, 1864-noon.

Lieutenant-General GRANT:

Your dispatch received. Before replying it will be necessary I should see both Warren and Burnside to obtain information. I am now under the impression that the former does not consider an attack in his front practicable, but the latter some days ago was of the opinion that he could, in his front, break through the enemy's line. I will advise you as soon as possible of my views fully.

GEO. G. MEADE,

Major-General, Commanding.

CITY POINT, VA., July 3, 1864.

General MEADE:

General Sigel telegraphs that Early, Breckinridge, Jackson, and Mosby are reported to be moving down the Shenandoah Valley. Is it not certain that Early has returned to your front?

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.