Francis H. Smith Incoming correspondence
Letter from Maj. Gen. John C. Breckinridge
May 4, 1864
Smith Papers top level
Hq, Department of W. Va.,
Dublin Depot, May 4, 1864
I have just received your letter of the 2d instant, concerning one from General Lee to the Adjutant General of Virginia, also a copy of the instructions to you from the Governor.
I am gratified to learn that a battalion of cadets 250 strong, with a section of artillery, will be ready to move on a moment's notice. This force will be very effective in assisting to repel or capture destructive raiding parties.
The limits of my department have not been defined in the east, and I have been unable to adopt many precautions east of Monroe and Greenbrier. I have, however, thrown up a work at the railroad bridge over the Cow Pasture, another at the bridge over Jackson River, and a line of rifle pits at Island Ford. Col. Wm. L. Jackson is covering the approaches to these points, and to Rockbridge, from that general direction. It may be necessary for you to move in that quarter, or to protect the iron furnaces in Botetourt or in Buchanan. I will try to send the earliest intelligence through General Imboden, as you suggest, or if it should be beyond reach of telegraph, by special couriers.
General Imboden will, of course, apprise you of my movements in direction of Millboro, Staunton, etc. Fully appreciating your patriotic feelings, and those of the young gentlemen you command.
I am, General, Your obedient servant/signed/John C. Breckinridge.