Camp Near Spotsylvania C. H. May 8th/64
MAJ. GEN. BURNSIDE,
The enemy have made a strong resistence here, so much so that no advance will be attempted to-morrow. You will not therefore move your advance beyond (south of) the Gate. If you have not already got two Divisions at the front get them up by 6 O'Clock a m to-morrow so that if they should be called for they can be marched from the Gate directly on Spotsylvania.
U. S. GRANT
ALS, deCoppet Collection, NjP. Printed as written at 9:00 P. M. in O. R., I, xxxvi, part 2, 548.
On May 8, 1864, 9:00 A. M. and 9:40 A. M., Lt. Col. Cyrus B. Comstock wrote to Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside. "Lt Gen Grant desires that you occupy a position as near Aldrichs as you can get to cover our trains from a possible attack down the plank road. Sedgwick will have a division at Piney Branch Church where these Hdqrs will be. You should connect with this Division ... You should to day & tonight issue five days rations from tomorrow. You will probably remain in position till sometime tomorrow morning" "Lt Gen Grant desires that like Gen Meade, you send your wounded to Fredericksburg, where your Medical officers will act in conjunction with the Medical Director of the Army of the Potomac in establishing temporary hospitals and moving these wounded thence to Washington via Aquia Creek. If you are not able to move all your wounded at once, you will, keeping your ambulances with you, send your empty Qr. M. wagons under flag of truce to the battle field with supplies and get the rest of the wounded & move them to Fredericksburg" Copies, DLC-USG, V, 45, 59, 66; DNA, RG 108, Letters Sent. O. R., I, xxxvi, part 2, 545. On the same day, Brig. Gen. John A. Rawlins wrote to Burnside. "We have no troops at Alsops Gate or Andersons. These three points are on the road which will be designated in future orders for your next march—Please get the five days rations, you were directed to issue this morning into the hands of your men at the earliest possible moment—" Copies, DLC-USG, V, 45, 59, 66; DNA, RG 108, Letters Sent. O. R., I, xxxvi, part 2, 546. At 12:45 P. M., 1:00 P. M., and 3:00 P. M., Rawlins wrote to Burnside. "The following is a memorandum of the order of the next march. The time of starting will be given you hereafter. Hancock followed by Warren via Block House, Pennys Tavern, Mount Pleasant, Three-Cornered Handkerchief, Wallers Church and Dabney's Mill—Sedgwick followed by artillery reserve and such ammunition trains as are not taken with Corps, via Spottsylvinia C. H. Mattapony Church, Green Branch to New Market, to Davens