War of the Rebellion: Serial 089 Page 0368 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LIV.

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line of redoubts to enter Richmond. The prize is large, and if we are that near the attempt to seize it will justify loss, specially if successful. If in Richmond, the orders given corps commanders about the 28th September last will govern. Everything in this movement, as, indeed in most others, depends on celerity and promptitude. Therefore, the troops will be in light-marching order, with three days' rations in their haversacks, sixty rounds of ammunition in their boxes and on their persons, and blankets rolled round them. Fifty rounds per man more of ammunition will be in wagons to accompany the columns. All other trains, except ambulance trains, which will be as few as possible, will be sent to the south side of the James, and will begin to move in that direction at the same time their column move in the other. The Tenth Corps and cavalry wagons will move by the Deep Bottom bridge and the Eighteenth Corps by the Varina Bridge. Five days' rations and fifty rounds of extra ammunition will be put on the wagons, lightly loaded, so as to be ready to move at the word. A strong and vigilant provost guard will follow each column to prevent straggling. Line officers must be cautioned that straggling depends on them, and they will be held responsible for it. It may be that the enemy will attack our lines, supposing them undefended. That he can only do by abandoning his own. In that, not very probable but still possible, case General Terry, passing beyond the enemy's line, will attack his flank and rear with all vigor, being certain of support.

The enemy has on this side of the James about 7,000 good troops and about as many more conscripts and reserves. There need be, therefore, no nervousness about an attack from him. Let him come either in flank or rear; we want him anywhere but in his works. Nor need there be any about his receiving re-enforcements from the south side. Measures have been taken to keep him fully employed there, and if he comes here the Army of the Potomac will come with him. Let these facts be impressed, first, upon division and brigade commanders before the movement commences, and then, after the march begins, upon the regimental commanders and thence through the line. Let it be understood that this is to be a movement to try to meet the enemy outside of his works, and the sooner he comes out the better. The commanding general will be on the right of the column of General Terry at the beginning of the movement, and will keep corps commanders advised where his headquarters may be; will give such further directions as the exigency may call for. Corps commanders will keep the general advised of all occurrences by prompt report, carefully noting the hour of report. It need not be said to generals of such experience as General Terry and Weitzel that unsound and exaggerated rumors are rife on the day of action, and, therefore, that the general expects all reports sent to him will have been thoroughly investigated, as he will place implicit reliance upon everything reported him as fact by the corps commanders except he knows the contrary.

The corps commanders will please send some of the most intelligent deserters and prisoners by the speediest means to the general, so that he may be early possessed of true stories, may compare their statements with his information, and govern himself accordingly.


Major-General, Commanding.

(Same to General Weitzel, commanding Eighteenth Corps, and Colonel West, commanding Cavalry Division.)