War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0591 Chapter LVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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HEADQUARTERS MIDDLE MILITARY DIVISION,

February 18, 1865.

Major-General SHERIDAN,

Commanding Middle Military Division, Md.:

The party sent by you some time since to operate on the Lynchburg bridge has returned. He did not succeed. He makes the following report:

Fitz Lee's division and Payne's brigade have gone to Greenville, N. C. Some dismounted men and about 300 cavalry at Liberty Mills are the only force on the east side of the Blue Ridge. The reports are that Lee will evacuate Richmond.

This person says that Mosby is back with his command. We had four inches of snow last night; it is, however, thawing very fast. The rebels are conscripting in and around Luray all males from sixteen to sixty. All quiet.

JAS. W. FORSYTH,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS MIDDLE MILITARY DIVISION,

February 18, 1865.

Major-General SHERIDAN,

Eutaw House, Baltimore, Md.:

General Devin telegraph that his scout, just in from Philomont, reports that all citizens in that vicinity between the ages of eighteen and fifty have been ordered to report at Little Washington. Devin also says that a reliable man at Philomont sent him in word that the rebels are repairing the bridges north of Richmond. I suppose he means the railroad bridges. The rebels are conscripting all males between the ages of sixteen and sixty in the Luray Valley. A party sent out by the cavalry returned from up the Valley yesterday. They went as far as Edenburg, sending a party back by way of Little Fort Valley. This latter party destroyed a furnance that was working for the Confederate Government, and captured twelve prisoners. A scouting party from the Second Cavalry Division captured, at Howellsville, last night, Lieutenant-Colonel Massie, of the Twelfth Virginia Cavalry, and three majors, two captains, and six or seven privates. The snow is melting very fast. No other news.

JAS. W. FORSYTH,

Chief of Staff.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST CORPS,

February 18, 1865.

Lieutenant-General GRANT,

City Point, Va.:

A sufficient number of officers who have heretofore served with me have applied to fill the prominent commands. If the decision should be left with me, I would prefer appointing them, though I have no doubt the officer you mention would be of service in the Northwest in recruiting.

WINF'D S. HANCOCK,

Major-General, U. S. Volunteers.