Monterey, Va., November 26, 1861.
Colonel C. L. STEVENSON,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General:
COLONEL: General H. R. Jackson left this post yesterday with instructions to me to open all dispatches to him, and should the commanding general direct a forward movement of the four regiments here (to Staunton) to proceed with them to that point, or in the event of no order to that effect, to remain here in command of this post with all the troops detailed to form the garrison and proceed to erect huts and make arrangements for wintering. The dispatch from Major Cole from the Warm Springs directs the general (Jackson) to march with the four regiments to Staunton and on to Manassas. I will therefore move to-morrow morning, which is the earliest moment practicable, because of the fact that there was not transportation sufficient on the Alleghany Summit for the baggage of the command, and much had to be let at that point. I have made arrangements for forwarding the baggage, so that it will probably overtake us before we reach Staunton. Before receiving the order to march I was about to address you a communication on the subject of the retention of a number of prisoners now confined here, taken as Union men, most of them with arms in their hands and some of them after having been engaged in molesting and even killing some of our men. The force which will remain here will scarcely be adequate for the ordinary guard duty, independent of guarding the prisoners, and I submit to the general commanding the propriety of forwarding them to Richmond. I think it also proper that I should state that a private of the Twenty-third Virginia Regiment, a reliable man, who was taken prisoner some months ago by the enemy, reached this place yesterday on parole direct from Romney. He reports the force of the enemy there at 7,000 by his estimate, and as 8,000 by the report of the men with whom he conversed. He says they have eight pieces of artillery.
[W. B. TALIAFERRO,
ADJUTANT-GENERAL'S OFFICE, ARMY OF NORTHWEST,
Huntersville, Va., November 26, 1861.
Colonel W. B. TALIAFERRO, or
COMMANDING OFFICER FORCES MONTEREY LINE:
SIR: I have just received a copy of a letter forwarded to-day from the Warm Springs by the general commanding to Brigadier-General Jackson, directing him to move a certain number of regiments of his command to Staunton. To-day I dispatched to him an important communication from the Secretary of War, which I have reason to believe will cause him to suspend or revoke those orders. I therefore respectfully suggest that you delay the movement until you receive further instructions. The express left here at 3 o'clock, will reach him to-night, and you may expect to receive instructions in the forenoon of the day after to-morow (28th.).
I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,