War of the Rebellion: Serial 082 Page 0755 Chapter LII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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of that army? So far as I know it has not. If this be correct the battalion should still be regarded as belonging permanently to First Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, and as at present only temporarily serving, by the tacit sanction of General Lee, with troops not regularly incorporated with his army. While thus serving it may most conveniently report, draw, &c., through the proper officer of its temporary department and be regarded in its permanent relations as "detached," but should important changes of position occur the battalion must revert, I think, to its regular connection. It is the more important to have this question accurately adjusted because while you have, I understand, a superabundance of artillery in the Department of Southern Virginia and North Carolina, we are more than a battalion deficient in one of the corps Army of Northern Virginia. General Pickett has besides especially requested that this battalion, which has through a large part of the war served with his division, may still serve with him, and I believe the association would be beneficial to the service, because mutually desired. The Washington Artillery Battalion stands in a position similar, with the exception that it is not now serving with a command belonging to the Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia. My judgment is that it should at once report to and draw through the proper officers of the artillery First Corps, Army of Northern Virginia. There is, however, a wish, I understand, on its part and that of General Beauregard that this battalion [Washington Artillery] should be attached to his command. Is such be the general's wish I will most cheerfully promote it by recommending any suitable exchange by which it can be justly accomplished. Please ascertain the views of General Beauregard and of the other officers concerned on these points, and let me know, that all possible difficulty may be obviated in time.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General, Chief of Artillery.

CHAFFIN'S FARM, July 9, 1864.

Colonel SALE, Military Secretary:

I have visited several points on the river and found several favorable for placing batteries-one at Wilcox's, where the navigation, except by iron-clads, would be effectually closed. This would force Grant to drive away the batteries at any cost. I have reported this to General Lee and am momentarily expecting his answer as to whether he prefers temporary annoyances to the enemy with the means at my disposal, or whether he will use greater force. At several points there seemed opportunities for placing torpedoes in the river. I am ready to give any assistance to the operators when called on. No application has been made to me so far. A large amount of produce is being drawn from points on the river liable to ravages from the enemy.



Lieutenant General R. S. EWELL,


GENERAL: Your note of July 7, in reply to my communication of 4th instant, has been received. The object of my inquiries in that note