Sunday, October 20, 2013

October 9, 1863 (Sunday): Mobile and Prompt

Major General Robert Ransom, Jr.

October 9, 1863.
Major General SAMUEL JONES,
Dublin Depot:
GENERAL: I arrived here yesterday; Hill's corps was moving and passed, going to the front and left of this place.
    This morning early, Ewell's corps passed, or at least two divisions. General Lee moves to-day. General Early's division will, I think, bring up the rear. I think I shall be able to get my troops here. Cooke's brigade has already arrived.
    It is supposed the enemy has fallen back to Culpeper Court-House, and perhaps beyond that place. A deserter reported yesterday that only a small body was in that town. I am sorry to find General Lee quite unwell from an attack of rheumatism. He expressed great interest in getting supplies from Tennessee and kentucky. Any horses you can have sent to him will be more than acceptable.
I shall go down to-day. If a fight comes off I can hardly be in it.
    Everything indicates rapidity of motion, and if the enemy is going to his entrenchments about Washington, there is not time to lose. Every one says the army is in fine condition. What I have seen appears to be. They are mobile and prompt.
    When I reach Richmond I will write again. Regards to your staff.

    Very truly,
    R. RANSOM, JR.

Official Records, Series I., Vol. 29, Part 2, Page 782.

Ransom was assigned to various duties regarding the defense of Richmond.  He was in a position to know all he states of the army's movements.  It is because of his undefined duties in Richmond he states he can hardly be in a fight if there is one.  He was likely further away from his post than the administration might have found acceptable.  Also interesting are the comments with relation to General Lee's health.  It is likely a heart condition, not rheumatism, was the cause of his unwellness.


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