War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0918 N. AND SE. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.

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of Fort Pocahontas, with a garrison of but 700 men, and would take many months to construct. When completed it could not be held against a persistent attack on account of the number of ravines by which it would be cut. No boat yesterday or to-day. Shall return to-morrow unless your order the line laid out.


Captain and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.


Columbia, Va., Friday, March 10, 1865.

Lieutenant General U. S. GRANT,

Commanding Armies of the United States:

GENERAL: In my last dispatch, dated Waynesborough, I gave a brief account of the defeat of General Early by Custer's division. The same night this division was pushed across the Blue Ridge, and entered Charlottesville at 2 p.m. the next day. The mayor of the city and the principal inhabitants came out and delivered up the keys of the public buildings. I had to remain at Charlottesville two days; this time was consumed in bringing over from Waynesborough our ammunition and pontoon trains. The mud was horrible beyond description and the rain incessant. The two divisions were during this time occupied in destroying the two large iron bridges-one over the Rivanna River, the other over Moore's Creek, near Charlottesville-and the railroad for a distance of eight miles in the direction of Lynchburg.

On the 6th of March I sent the First Cavalry Division, General Devin commanding, To Scottsville, on the James River, with directions to send out light parties through the country and destroy all merchant mills, factories, and bridges on the Rivanna River, these parties to join the division at Scottsville. The division then proceded along the canal to Duguidsville, fifteen miles from Lynchburg, destroying every lock and in many places the bank of the canal. At Duguidsville we hoped to secure the bridge, to let us cross the river, as our pontoons were useless on account of the high water. In this, however, we were foiled, as both this bridge and the bridge at Hardwicksville were burneld by the enemy upon our approach. General Merritt accompanied this division. The Third Division started at the same time from Charlottesville and proceeded down the Lynchburg railroad to Amherst Court-House, destroying every bridge on the road and in many places miles of the track. The bridges on this road were numerous, and some of them 500 in length. Finding I could not cross the James, I concentrated at New Market, and determined to return along the canal and still further destroy it, in the direction of Richmond. We arrived here to-night and will destroy the canal as far as Goochland to-morrow. I will then move on to the Central road and continue its destruction, and will then strike the Fredericksburg railroad and destroy it.

We have found great abundance in this country for our men and animals; in fact, the canal has been the great feeder of Richmond. At the Rockfish River the bank of the canal was cut, and at New Market, where the dam is across the James, the guard lock was destroyed and the James River let into the canal, carrying away the banks and washing out the bottom of the canal. The dam across the James at this point was also partially destroyed. After finishing the Fredericksburg road I will join you, unless otherwise directed. Send forage and rations to the White House, also pontoons, in case I have to go around