MANASSAS, May 30, 1862.
General McDowell hoped to leave here by 7 o'clock; it is now 10. He is detained here by the inefficiency of the railroad. It is not known, however, whether the coast is clear or not.
Chief of Staff.
Washington City, D. C., May 31, 1862-10.10 p. m.]
Army of the Potomac:
Shields surprised the enemy yesterday at Front Royal; recaptured a considerable number of prisoners, cars, locomotives, and stores. The enemy retreated this morning from Harper's Ferry toward Winchester. General Halleck states that the enemy are retreating south toward Mobile. We have no other news to-day. Your telegram* was received this morning and the additional ambulances were ordered.
EDWIN M. STANTON.
HEADQUARTERS FIFTH PROVISIONAL ARMY CORPS,
Camp near New Bridge, Va., May 31, 1862.
Chief of Staff, Headquarters Army of the Potomac:
GENERAL: I have the honor to inform you that Colonel Warren had arrived at Cold Harbor with his command this morning before the order reached him to remain at Old Church. In view of the bad state of the roads I have directed him to send the various regiments to their proper commands. I respectfully suggest the cavalry may be ordered to reoccupy Old Church.
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
F. J. PORTER,
HEADQUARTERS THIRD CORPS,
Savage's, May 31, 1862-8.45 p. m.
Chief of Staff:
I am just in. When I got to the front the most of General Casey's division had dispersed, and our fortified position was lost. I ordered up all Kearny's and the most of Hooker's division. We checked the enemy and was outflanking him on his right, when our center gave way, and eventually our left had to follow. A number of pieces of artillery were lost before I arrived; how many I am not able to say. I ordered up a brigade on the railroad, but it advanced so slowly that it arrived too late to prevent the disaster to our center. We have
*See May 30, 9.30 p. m., VOL. XI, Part III, p. 201.