War of the Rebellion: Serial 082 Page 0702 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LII.

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HEADQUARTERS NINTH ARMY CORPS,

Before Petersburg, Va., July 31, 1864.

Major-General MEADE,

Commanding Army of the Potomac:

GENERAL: I have the honor to request that a flag of truce be sent out for the purpose of making arrangements for assisting the wounded and burying the dead left on the field of battle. The number of the wounded left between the lines and beyond the first lines of the enemy has been exaggerated by rumor. They are not believed to amount to over 100 in all. Of these there are but few between the lines, the greater part being beyond the first line of the enemy's works.

I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A. E. BURNSIDE,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

July 31, 1864.

Major-General BURNSIDE:

Your communication of this date, respecting the wounded and dead left on the field in the engagement of yesterday, has been received and laid before the commanding general, and I have the honor herewith to transmit a letter* addressed to General R. E. Lee, commanding Army of Northern Virginia, asking for a cessation of hostilities sufficiently long to enable us to bring off our wounded and dead, which you are desired to send to the enemy's lines, and you are authorized to instruct the officer who takes the flag to say to the officer who receives it that the object of the letter is simply to effect the removal of the dead and wounded, and that if an informal arrangement for this purpose can be entered into it will not be necessary to forward the communication to General Lee.

Very respectfully, &c.,

S. WILLIAMS,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS NINTH ARMY CORPS,

July 31, 1864.

Major-General HUMPHREYS:

The commanding general desires to know if he is to understand the letter to General Lee is to be forwarded sealed.

A. E. BURNSIDE,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

July 31, 1864-11.30 a.m.

Major General A. E. BURNSIDE,

Commanding:

I am instructed by the commanding general to say that the letter to General Lee is to be forwarded sealed if it is found necessary to send it. In the letter transmitting it to you you were informed of the pur-

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*See Meade to Lee, p. 691.

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