War of the Rebellion: Serial 089 Page 0103 Chapter LIV. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

OFFICE OF THE PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL,

October 7, 1864.

Major-General HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: Four contrabands that left Petersburg last night state that the hospital and commissary departments are being moved to Danville by the South Side Railroad, and heavy guns are being buried. As to the latter no definite information is given. The greater bulk of Lee's army is in the vicinity of the South side Railroad, and the lines south and east of the city are very thinly manned. A general impression prevails that it is absolutely necessary to hold the South Side Railroad, which if lost ends the performance. No recent movements.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. C. BABCOCK.

HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

OFFICE OF THE PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL,

October 7, 1864.

Major-General HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: A deserter from the Thirty-eighth North Carolina, Scales' brigade, of Wilcox's division, came into the lines of the Fifth Army Corps last evening. He left his brigade lying between the Weldon railroad and the Boydton plank road. It was on the left of the division, and its left rested on the railroad near the lead-works. Came into this position day before yesterday, on returning from Chaffin's farm. Scales' brigade was the only brigade that went to Chaffin's from Wilcox's division. McGowan's and Lane's brigades still on our right. Think there are no troops west of the Weldon railroad, excepting Heth's division and three brigades of Wilcox's division. Scales' brigade is extended in a long, thin line.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JNumbers C. BABCOCK.

HDQRS. ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, SIGNAL DEPARTMENT,

October 7, 1864.

Major-General HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: The several signal stations along the lines report no changes or movements on the part of the enemy, excepting a section of artillery passed toward the enemy's right upon the Boydton plank road at 7.30 a. m., and a small camp near the Richmond pike disappeared since yesterday.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

B. F. FISHER,

Major and Chief Signal Officer.