War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0312 N. AND SE. VA., N. C., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.

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the contents of to the President, and sent at the same time a staff officer to receive the gentlemen, and conduct them to my quarters to await the action of the President. The gentlemen have arrived, and since their arrival I have been put in possession of the telegraphic correspondence which had been going on for two days previous. Had I known of this correspondence in time these gentlemen would not have been received within our lines.

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.

JANUARY 31, 1865.

Honorable ALEX. H. STEPHENS,

Honorable J. A. CAMPBELL,

Honorable R. M. T. HUNTER:

GENTLEMEN: Your communication of yesterday, requesting an interview with myself and a safe conduct to Washington and return, is received. I will instruction the commanding officer of the forces near Petersburg to receive you, notifying you at what part of the line and the time when and where conveyance will be ready for you.

Your letter to me has been telegraphed to Washington for instructions. I have no doubt but that before you arrive at my headquarters an answer will be received directing me to comely with your request. Should a different reply be received I promise you a safe and immediate return within your own lines.

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.

CITY POINT, VA., January 31, 1865-11.30 a. m. (Received 1.20 p. m.)

Honorable EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War:

Please constitute North Carolina a department for present purposes, Major-General Schofield in command, subject to Sherman's orders. It is impossible for Foster to give orders from Hilton Head as well as I can from here. I will give General Schofield all his orders and instructions until Sherman gets in reach of him.

U. S. GRANT,

Lieutenant-General.

WASHINGTON, January 31, 1865-5.30 p. m.

Lieutenant-General GRANT,

City Point:

The Department of North Carolina, with Schofield in command, has been ordered as you requested.

EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.