War of the Rebellion: Serial 089 Page 0850 OPERATIONS IN SE.VA. AND N.C. Chapter LIV.

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HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,

December 7, 1864-7 p.m.

Major-General HUMPHREYS:

I have no answer to my telegram of inquiry of 11 a.m. this day. Please send me the desired information.

GEO. G. MEADE,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS,

December 7, 1864.

Major-General MEADE, Commanding Army of the Potomac:

In preliminary compliance with your directions by telegraph this morning, I have to report that I have proposed to leave 4,600 men in the lines, apportioned as follows: General Wheaton's division, from Battery 24 to Fort Wadsworth, inclusive 1,400 men; General Seymour's division from Fort Wadsworth to slashing beyond Fort Keene, 750 men; Major-General Gibbon's division, from left of Wheaton to right of Fort Fisher, 900 men; Major-General Miles' division from Fort Fisher to Fort Cummings, both inclusive, 1,550 men; total (six miles of line), 4,600 men. Perhaps this might be reduced a few hundred men. The force available for movement will then be Major-General Miles' division (First), 5,000 men, leaving the Third or Fourth Brigade in the intrenchments; Major-General Gibbon's division (Second), 2,500 men, leaving probably the Second Brigade in the intrenchments; Picket of Third Division, 800 men; Brigadier-General Seymour's division, 3,000 men (organizations not reported yet; strength of division given as 3,800); Brigadier-General Wheaton's division, 2,000 men (organizations and strength not yet reported; strength of division stated to be about 3,500); total available for movement, 13,300 men; left in intrenchments 4,600 men; total in intrenchments and in reserve, say 18,000 men. The batteries in the rear works available for movement with the troops are: Second Corps, Eleventh New York, 6 guns (3-inch rifled); Second Corps, Twelfth New York, 4 guns (light 12-pounders); Second Corps, First Rhode Island, 6 guns (light 12-pounders); Sixth Corps, First New Jersey (section of), 2 guns (light 12-pounders); Fifth Corps, First New York, 4 guns (3-inch rifles); total, 22; of which 12 are light 12-pounders and 10 are 3-inch rifles. I inclose copy of instructions issued respecting which I desire instructions, if not in accordance with your intentions. Will send report in detail of garrisons, commanders, &c. It is intended to leave the intrenchments held by Sixth Corps in command of ranking officer of that corps and the same of Second Corps.

A. A. HUMPHREYS,

Major-General, Commanding.

[Inclosure.]

CIRCULAR.] HEADQUARTERS SECOND ARMY CORPS,

December 7, 1864.

In compliance with the instructions from the headquarters Army of the Potomac arrange this command so that the lines will be held with the minimum force, depending principally upon the inclosed works, and to hold the rest of the troops ready as reserves to make any movement that may be ordered, the following dispositions will be made:

1. Brigadier-General Wheaton, commanding First Division, Sixth Corps, will assign 150 enlisted men for the garrison of Fort Howard, 300 enlisted for the garrison of Fort Wadsworth, and 150 men to each