War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0251 Chapter LVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

Search Civil War Official Records

Evans had sent out a scouting party. The instructions given to the party, as reported to you, were given by Colonel Evans and reported to you that you might avoid collision if possible. Colonel Evans was directed to send out a party and proceed on Charles City road. The general also desires me to inform you that hereafter he will see that Colonel Evans does not scout in front of your lines.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. C. WHIPPLE,

Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. CAVALRY DIVISION, ARMY OF THE JAMES,

In the Field, January 24, 1865.

Colonel WEST:

I am directed by the general commanding cavalry to say that you will send out a scouting party at daylight to-morrow morning, January 25, unless you receive orders to the contrary. You will send in front of your lines.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. C. WHIPPLE,

Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.

FORT MONROE, VA., January 24, 1865.

Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT,

Commanding Armies of the United States, City Point, Va.:

GENERAL: I beg leave to call your attention to the following matters in relation to affairs in the District of North Carolina. General Sherman, who has recently assumed the command of the Department of the South, has been furnished by me with an account of all the troops, supplies of every kind, land and water transportation, railroad rolling-stock, &c. In order to fully carry out the views of General Sherman it will be necessary to seize and securely hold Kinston and to complete the railroad from New Berne to that place. For this purpose I would require an additional force temporarily of, say, 5,000 men, and about fifteen miles of railroad iron, and a few experienced railroad builders.

I would request also to be furnished with a light-draught steamer capable of carrying, say 800 men, or two companies of cavalry or a battery of artillery. There is no such steamer now in my district. The Escort is about the class of steamer needed, and she was under orders for New Berne when the change in the department was made, when the order was countermanded.

In order to clear out the Neuse River and keep it open for small boats I would require temporarily one or two light-draught army gun-boats.

My plan for seizing Kinston would be to cross the Neuse at a point some seven miles below the town, and for this I would require a pontoon bridge, say, 200 yards long.

I would call your attention to the fact that the rebels are pushing the work on the ram at Edwards Ferry, some fifty miles up the Roanoke River from Plymouth. I have sent a small expedition to endeavor to surprise, capture, and burn this ram, and I am hopeful but not confident of success. The ram Albemarle recently sunk by the navy in lying at the wharf at Plymouth, and she can easily be raised. If this