HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA,
New Berne, N. C., September 21, 1864.
Brigadier General L. S. BAKER,
Commanding Confederate Forces, Goldsborough, N. C.:
GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt this day, by flag of truce, of your letter of the 20th instant, referring to several persons who accompany the flag and who desire to enter our lines. You say, "all persons recently sent through our lines went with the distinct understanding and agreement that they were not to return during the present war, and I should be obliged to decline to receive any of them into our lines again." In reply I have to say that I understood this declaration to refer only to those persons whom I choose to receive after examination, as I shall not, and you certainly cannot expect me to, receive whatever persons you choose to send under flag of truce until I have some knowledge of their character.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CITY POINT, VA., September 22, 1864-11.30 p.m.
Chief of Staff:
Of 1,438 men sent here yesterday 1,019 had to be sent back to Alexandria. More than half the men coming from there have to be sent immediately back, not belonging to any regiment here. The officers in charge of Camp Distribution are grossly negligent of their duties and ought to be punished for it with stoppage of pay.
U. S. GRANT,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
September 22, 1864-12 m.
I have nothing particular to report as having occurred during the past twenty-four hours. The tri-monthly return for the 20th shows an aggregate present for duty in the Second Cavalry Division, officers and men, 4,203. Kautz's return for same date shows an aggregate of 1,493, making in all 5,696; a little over my estimate of that date. This return of the 20th also shows an aggregate, officers and men, in this army of 47,712 being a gain over the return of the 10th of 4,320. If you do not propose any immediate use of the Second Cavalry Division, now in reserve, I would suggest its being again put on picket duty, as Kautz's command is inadequate from numbers and morale to the task of properly watching the country from the Blackwater to the James.
GEO. G. MEADE,
CITY POINT, September 22, 1864.
(Received 1 p.m.)
You may put the Second Cavalry Division on duty again. Colonel Sharpe has news from Richmond saying that nothing was known there of Early's disaster, but it was understood that his force might be looked