Cumberland, August 25, 1864
Colonel R. STEVENSON,
Comdg. 154th Ohio National Guard, New Creek, W. Va.:
The term of service of your regiment having expired, and being on the eve of your departure for Ohio, preparatory to being mustered out of service, I accept the opportunity offered of expressing to yourself and the officers and men of your regiment my thanks for the eminent service you have rendered the country while in my command. Always ready, your faithfulness has only been equaled by your willingness on being called upon to pass through the ordeal of battle. Even in your short term of service your bravery and unfaltering courage were nobly attested. You can return, colonel, to your homes with the proud satisfaction of knowing that while you relieved the veteran troops for duty in the front, it was your pleasant duty to be participants at New Creek, W. Va., August 4, 1864, in administering to the enemies of our Government one of the most disastrous repulses in the history of the war. I regret very much, colonel, that the requirement of the service would not permit of your departure for your homes at the expiration of your term, but gladly bear testimony to the willingness with which you remained at your country's call. I trust, colonel, to soon learn that there are many members of your regiment again in the service nobly battling for the common cause.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,,
B. F. KELLEY,
COLUMBUS, OHIO, August 25, 1864.
Honorable EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War:
General Kelley's course with the 100-days' men is creating great annoyance and dissatisfaction. I telegraphed you about the One hundred and fifty-fourth Regiment, but have no reply. The One hundred and fifty-second, One hundred and fifty-sixth, and One hundred and forty-fifth have a messenger here this morning with complaints. He reports from General Kelley direct that he pleads orders from General Crook to hold all troops in his command until further orders. I cannot say how far this is true; I know the regiments are being held over time and the result is injurious. Please advise me on this point; the men look to me for some explanation on the subject.
Governor of Ohio.
CITY POINT, VA., August 26, 1864-2.30 p.m.
(Received 12.10 a.m. 27th.)
I telegraphed you that I had good reason for believing that Fitz Lee had been ordered back here. I now think it likely that all troops will be ordered back from the Valley except what they believe to be the minimum number to detain you. My reason for supposing this is based upon the fact that yielding up the Weldon road seems to be a blow to the enemy he cannot stand. I think I do not overstake the