Rosser's measures taken, and so skillfully executed, that the enemy's pickets were captured and the fort charged before the presence of our troops was known. The enemy did not fire a single piece of artillery. The fort, prisoners, the colors of the Fifth and Sixth Virginia Cavalry. Captain (Federal), the garrison flag, and five guidons were captured by Payne's brigade, consisting of the Fifth and Sixth Virginia Cavalry. Captain Fitzhugh, of the Fifth, by whom the flags were transmitted to the Department, led the assault on Fort Kelley, and was the first to enter the works and pull down the flag. Generals Rosser states that the stores destroyed filled several large warehouses. The machine shops at Piedmont had been repaired and enlarge since they were burned by Captain McNeill. They were thoroughly destroyed by Major McDonald, of Rosser's brigade, together with nine engines and a number of cars.
The whole number of prisoner captured was 700, but in bringing them out through the mountains at night between 200 and 300 escaped. Between 1,200 and 1,500 horses and about the same number of cattle were secured.
The expedition was conducted with great skill and boldness, and reflects great credit upon General Rosser and the offices and men of his command.
I forward herewith some papers that were taken, which show what the enemy contemplated doing and the treatment intended for our citizens on the northern border.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE,
Honorable SECRETARY OF WAR,
[Inclosure No. 1]
New Creek, W. Va., November 24, 1864.
[Lieutenant Colonel R E. FLEMING:]
DEAR COLONEL: I have sent instructions to the State troops to be on the South Fork at the junction of the Howard's Lick road, four miles above Moorefield, at daylight next Monday morning. I propose to send 150 men by Romney and the Hanging Rock to strike the Wardensville road ten miles east of Moorefield at the same time, and that 100 men go into Moorefield by the road we came out at the same time. The parties on these others road will then intercept any rebels who may be frightened away from Moorefield. I propose that you execute this plan. I will send out what supplies are needed an one piece of artillery. After concentrating at Moorefiled, General Crook desires that everything fit for army use be either brought off or destroyed while returning. Take all the time needed to give a thorough raking to the entire country, and leave nothing but what is absolutely needed for family use. Give certificates for everything-even that destroyed as "by virtue of instructions from department headquarters." You can ascertain the distances and the consequent time needed to make the destined points at the appointed hour. I would move some on Sunday and make the night trip as short as possible. Keep a good lookout. I learn that Rosser is foraging in the South Fork Valley. Adjutant Parker will return to