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[161] the memorandum of its proceedings is here given in full:--

Headquarters, army of the Potomac, Fairfax Court-House, March 13, 1862.
A council of the generals commanding army corps, at the Headquarters of the Army of the Potomac, were of the opinion--

I. That the enemy having retreated from Manassas to Gordonsville, behind the Rappahannock and Rapidan, it is the opinion of generals commanding army corps that the operations to be carried on will be best undertaken from Old Point Comfort, between the York and James Rivers: Provided--

1st. That the enemy's vessel, Merrimac, can be neutralized.

2d. That the means of transportation sufficient for an immediate transfer of the force to its new base can be ready at Washington and Alexandria to move down the Potomac; and,

3d. That a naval auxiliary force can be had to silence, or aid in silencing, the enemy's batteries on the York River.

4th. That the force to be left to cover Washington shall be such as to give an entire feeling of security for its safety from menace. (Unanimous.)

II. If the foregoing cannot be, the army should then be moved against the enemy, behind the Rappahannock, at the earliest possible moment, and the means for reconstructing bridges, repairing railroads, and stocking them with materials sufficient for supplying the army should at once be collected. for both the Orange & Alexandria and Acquia & Richmond Railroads. (Unanimous.)

N. B.--That, with the forts on the right bank of the Potomac fully garrisoned; and those on the left bank occupied,

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