War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0557 Chapter LVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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acknowledges that he told General Crawford that these troops might return to camp from their property and baggage when matters should have become settled, but, at the same time, he reserved to himself to determine when that time should arrive. The written authority conveying such permission should have emanated from his headquarters only, and, without such order, no instructions changing the disposition of the troops should have issued from the headquarters of your corps. He disapproves of your action in giving such instructions, and in doing so upon verbal representations made by a division commander in regard to the conversation held between such commander in regard to the conversation held between such commander and himself, and, furthermore, of the failure on your part to notify him promptly of the fact when such action had been taken by you.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. D. RUGGLES,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS SIXTH ARMY CORPS,

February 14, 1865.

Colonel RUGGLES:

I have the honor to report that nothing of importance has transpired on the lines of this corps during the past twenty-four hours.

H. G. WRIGHT,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST DIVISION, SIXTH CORPS,

February 14, 1865.

Bvt. Major C. H. WHITTELSEY,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Sixth Corps:

MAJOR: I have the honor to forward the inclosed report* of Lieutenant Colonel Gideon Clark, officer of the duty of this division. Lieutenant Pickett I have relieved from duty and placed in arrest. I have just finished examining this officer, and can only learn the following facts: Two of the posts under his direction on the picket-line were to the left and west of the Vaugham road. At about 11 a. m. he was lying down near the left picket-post, when he heard a conversation among the men, leading him to suppose that the division officer of the day and an orderly had passed through the lines to the front. He got up and discovered two mounted men, one apparently an officer, some distance in front of his vedettes and going toward the enemy's line at a walk. He told me that he expected every minute they would turn around and come back, supposing they were authorized officers reconnoitering, and for that reason did not order his vedettes to fire when he discovered them. They went out of sight, and men on the posts to his right saw them dismounted and conducted in the enemy's picket-line. Upon questioning his men they all supposed that it was an authorized officer examining the line, and several of them so stated when the men passed them. It so happens that the nearest post and the vedettes, within ten feet of which they passed, were recruits. The vedettes on either side of the post referred to were not recruits, but experienced soldiers. The boldness of this movement seems to have so confounded Lieutenant

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*Not found.

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