War of the Rebellion: Serial 088 Page 0757 Chapter LIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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CITY POINT, VA., September 9, 1864.

Major-General HALLECK,

Chief of Staff of the Army, Washington, D. C.:

Under the construction given to it the War Department Circular, Numbers 61, is giving rise to much dissatisfaction. According to it officers and non-commissioned officers of the three-years' organizations, who have at times varying from that of original organization to the present accepted promotions won by merit, often, if not always, in the belief that thereby their term of service was not increased, are now held for three years from their last promotion and remuster. I submit that such a decision at this late day is of doubtful expediency, with reference to those officers who, previous to the publication of the circular referred to, had accepted promotion, as, even if good officers, they will still feel that they have been unjustly treated and unfairly held. Since the promulgation of this circular many valuable officers are refusing promotion, which, while purporting to be a reward, yet imposes at once, without opportunity for furlough, another term of three years' service. For the good of the service I therefore respectfully recommend that circular be so changed that at all remusters arising from promotions, whether before or after its date, officers shall have the option of being remustered for the unexpired portion of their term of service or for three years, as they shall choose.

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL'S DEPARTMENT, September 9, 1864.

Major General A. A. HUMPHREYS, Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: Four deserters from the enemy just received that came into General Mott's division, Second Corps, about 9 o'clock last evening. Two of them are from Harris' brigade, and two from Finegan's brigade, all of Mahone's division, Hill's corps. One of the deserters from Harris' brigade, Nineteenth Mississippi Regiment, states that Humphreys' brigade, of Kershaw's division, has been lying in the rear of Mahone's division for the past five or six days until yesterday, when it moved to the right toward the Weldon railroad; that he visited this brigade day before yesterday, which was encamped in a valley just to the rear of Mahone's division; is positive they moved to the right yesterday; understood the brigade had lately come from the north side of the Appomattox, but did not know whether it had been to the Valley or not; that it was rumored yesterday Heth's division was about to move to the right; had not moved when informant left. Position of Hill's corps remains unchanged as far as known by these deserters.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JNO. C. BABCOCK.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL'S DEPARTMENT, September 9, 1864.

Major General A. A. HUMPHREYS, Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: Four deserters forwarded this p. m. from headquarters Ninth Army Corps. They came into our lines this morning about 5