HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS, October 12, 1864-9 a.m.
Chief of Staff;
No change has occurred in my lines since last report. The enemy are reported as having built a new work in front of No. 9. The artillery firing last night was inaugurated by the enemy, as it was the night before. A deserter from Finegan's brigade reports that a mine is about done under one of our works. From his description I think he means Fort Stedman. I understand listening galleries, &c., were run out from that front long since, but this deserter says he was detailed to work on this mine about three weeks ago and the gallery was then 260 yards long. Yesterday, he says, he saw a workman from there who said it was about ready. I have retained the man until I can send him down on the line, as he says he has located the place in his mind by certain landmarks.
WINF'D S. HANCOCK,
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, October 12, 1864-11 p.m.
I forward you a dispatch just received.* I have informed Lieutenant-General Grant I have no information of any mining at Fort Sedgwick. Your telegram upon the subject said the deserter had been detained to identify the locality, since which nothing has been received at these headquarters. If it is the case that Fort Sedgewick is the locality indicated I would state that some time ago, when a similar report was made, Major-General Warren prepared a second line in rear, to be held in the event of an explosion. Listening galleries were also sunk in different directions. At that time it was considered the distance the enemy would have to run their main gallery rendered the existence of a mine there improbable. Now our picket-line is so much farther advanced there should be no difficulty in detecting a mine, if one exists. I have ordered Major Michler to run a gallery in front of Fort Sedgwick its whole length. You will please to have the line in rear arranged for occupation, and make such preparation is conformity with the wishes of the lieutenant-general commanding as are best suited to meet the emergency anticipated.
GEO. G. MEADE,
HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS,
No. 258. Deserted House, before Petersburg, Va., October 12, 1864.
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4. Colonel G. N. Macy, Twentieth Massachusetts Volunteers, First Brigade, Second Division, will report without delay to Brigadier General N. A. Miles, U. S. Volunteers, commanding First Division, for assignment to the command of a brigade.
By order of Major-General Hancock:
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.
*See Grant to Meade, 10 p.m., p. 176.