War of the Rebellion: Serial 082 Page 0550 OPERATIONS IN SE. VAN AND N. C. Chapter LII.

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FORT POWHATAN, VA., July 27, 1864.

General B. F. BUTLER:

J. J. Deal, a prisoner here, pledges his honor as a man, and by everything he holds sacred, should he be released, to do everything in his power to prevent the telegraph line from being cut. Should he fail in this he pledges himself to inform on and quide our troops to the hiding places of those that cut the wire. He also wishes to take the oath of allegiance, leave the State, and remove to Cincinnati, Ohio, with his family. All are willing to take the oath. Had I better try him?

Colonel, Commanding.

HDQRS. DEPT. OF VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA,

In the Field, July 27, 1864.

Colonel INNIS,

Commanding, Fort Powhatan:

I have now sent you a driving engineer officer. you had better hurry up. General Grant is making movements that may lead to an attack on you. Get your works done quick. give the engineer officer all your help.

G. WEITZEL,

Brigadier-General and Acting Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS,

July 27, 1864.

QUARTERMASTER,

Bermuda:

You will send a telegraph construction party to Fort Powhatan this evening.

By command of Major-General Butler:

G. WEITZEL,

Brigadier-General and Acting Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS OUTPOSTS,

July 27, 1864-11 a. m.

General PALMER:

In compliance with your desire I have brought Mr. Moulton's traps in. The force I sent out to do this (two companies One hundred and thirty-second New York, D and E, under Captains Green and Geraty) have just returned; they captured one rebel scout. There is nothing whatever above. Colonel Whitford commands at Kinston, who had some re-enforcements sent him from Goldsborough to prepare against another visit of mine; in fact, the disposition of their pickets gives me always the key to their doings, but I can get around Southwest Creek again in spite of their present precautions, of which fact I trust to be able soon to convince Colonel Whitford, who at present seems to seek laurels in murdering and stealing picket posts.

P. J. CLAASSEN,

Colonel, Commanding Outposts.