Today in History:

53 Series I Volume XXVII-III Serial 45 - Gettysburg Campaign Part III

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Washington by the following stratagem:

An army of sufficient size to take Washington by surprise is to be clothed entirely in our uniform, and they confidently believe that this body of men will be able to get within the limits of the city before it will be discovered that they are not what they seem. They have lately been using every effort to get a knowledge of the defenses and troops around Washington, and it is known here that plans of the fortifications around Washington have been prepared for some times, awaiting a safe conveyance. Weather they have yet been sent is not known. This is the substance of the information derived from the best rebel authority in Baltimore. McGarry was formerly an intimate friend of [William L.] Yancey.


Capt, and Actg. Provost-Marshal, Middle Department.


WASHINGTON, D. C., June 10, 1863.


Corps of Engineers:

CAPTAIN: You will immediately repair to the city of Pittsburgh, Pa., and make preparations for the defense of that place against a possible rebel raid. Brigadier-General Barnard has been directed to advise with you on this subject. A copy of his instructions is inclosed herewith. *

The main object of your mission is to assist the municipal authorities and the people in preparing for their own defense. They are capable, and, it is presumed, ready to defend their town against any efforts the rebels may make to capture of destroy it. You will assist and animate them in the performance of this patriotic duty, should the occasion arise. A few day's labor in the trenches will render their city entirely safe from a coup de main. They should not neglect this preparation, nor postpone it till to late. Impress upon them the importance of prompt and efficient action. Brigadier-General Brooks has been appointed to the command of that department, with authority to make requisitions for arms, artillery, &c.

You will report to him, and show him these orders.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,




SUFFOLK, June 10, 1863.

Major-General DIX,

Yorktown, Va.:

Spear is the soul of such an enterprise. I would advise delay until, say Friday, on his account. Advise in respect to this.




*See Halleck to Barnard, June *, 1863, p. 36.


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