War of the Rebellion: Serial 088 Page 0645 Chapter LIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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force of cavalry there watching our lines - no infantry. As soon as these deserters reach these headquarters they will be examined and I will send you anything further that may be elicited. General Patrick informs me that there are between 100 and 200 bounty jumpers, as he styles them, who have deserted from us, and are believed to be in the woods watching an opportunity to get through the cavalry picket. This would be a good reason for retaining the picket-line.


Major-General and Chief of Staff.


September 1, 1864 - 7 p. m.

Major General A. A. HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff, Army of the Potomac:

GENERAL: I have directed the regiments of my division and General Kautz's regiments to move from my headquarters at 2 a. m. to-morrow. By moving at this hour my command will be at the Perkins house at daylight. The only roads upon which I can move out to strike the plank road west of the railroad are the Wyatt road (leading west from a point about two miles south of General Warren's position) and the Dinwiddie stage road. On this latter I will certainly strike the enemy's cavalry in force at Gravelly Hill, two miles from Reams' Station. The Wyatt road after leaving the railroad runs in a northwesterly direction and strikes the Vaughan road two miles and a half out. From the point at which the Vaughan road is struck there is no road leading ross to the plank road. The Vaughan road is very certainly defended for the protection of the plank road. The success of the operation required of the cavalry requires that a sudden dash be made. If you have any additional information will you please advise me at what point a force of cavalry might be moved rapidly with a prospect of reaching the road upon which the enemy may possibly be moving wagon trains?

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Commanding Second Division.


September 1, 1864 - 9.15 p. m.

Brigadier-General GREGG,

Commanding Cavalry:

I sent you about 7 o'clock some information respecting the condition of the Vaughan road nearer Petersburg than where you propose to strike it, showing that it is there but slightly guarded. I am not acquainted with the roads leading to it or to the Boydton plank. As soon as these deserters arrive I will question them and send you the result. The commanding general directs that the pickets be left on the line they now hold. General Crawford's division has been substituted for General Ayres' to support you. General Warren is directed to see that your instructions to the commander of the latter are turned over to the commander of Crawford's division, and is informed that the operation is intrusted to you and that the infantry commander will support you.


Major-General and Chief of Staff.