War of the Rebellion: Serial 089 Page 0634 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LIV.

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5. The commander of the cavalry will make corresponding preparations to those just indicated for the infantry.

6. The supply and other trains now at City Point will be moved at once to the vicinity of the Jerusalem plank road, in rear of the center of the army, well out of view of the enemy, and parked in such manner as not to block main or cross roads. The supplies herein directed to be carried will be drawn and kept on hand, and every arrangement made preparatory to moving according to these instructions.

By command of Major-General Meade:


Assistant Adjutant-General.


November 17, 1864.

Major General A. A. HUMPHREYS,

Chief of Staff, Army of the Potomac:

As I presume the commanding general would wish a report as to the troops and the progress of the works under my command here, I would state that since my letter of the 5th instant, forwarded by the hands of Captain Chester, I have had these forces reduced by the ordering away of the Two hundred and fifth Pennsylvania Regiment, as by the command of General Grant on the 10th instant. That of the two battalions of infantry remaining, one, the Sixty-first Massachusetts, has been ordered to Fort Porter to do the picket duty on the lines in advance of that work and Bailey's Creek, and with orders that the few men that can be spared from such duty shall complete the works in that vicinity. The other infantry battalion, the Eighteenth New Hampshire, has been continuously occupied upon the corduroy road north of the Appomattox.

The engineer troops under my command, besides furnishing from 400 to 500 men for daily duty, by the orders of General Grant, in the commissary, quartermaster's, and medical departments, and on the roads here, have been occupied in preparing the parapet and inclosures for the cattle herds at the Bland place, just outside of the right of the lines of defense, which work is now nearly completed and I expect that it will be entirely so by to-morrow night. I would further state that if no additional orders come to me for other labor, on Monday next, besides the details now ordered for the departments as stated above and the depot guard here and the guards of some thirty engineers indispensable at each of the forts, there may be some 200 to 300 engineers not absolutely at work here that could be put upon the works at Prince George Court-House, and I cannot positively estimate for any more from the troops under my command. But I would earnestly recommend for these men that they should have some opportunity given them for drills with their arms, which has not been the case with any of all the new troops assigned to me. Not a single company, except my old depot guards here, have ever drilled with their arms by my authority, or as far as I can learn at any time previous to their arrival here. In view of this I would respectfully ask a suspension of the orders about the Prince George Court-House works, at least until some large additional body of troops can be assigned here for these works. I may add, in this connection, that I find the other commands at this post have the opportunity to drill, even to the colored troops, the details of whom as laborers asked for by the quartermaster's department the engineers have been ordered to replace. I would state further that I have requested