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[46] the bridge. At this moment I arrived at the head of the column, and by a countermarch proceeded by the old road to Norfolk, where I arrived safe at five o'clock, when the Mayor and Common Council met me and surrendered the city.

The enemy, three thousand strong, with Gen. Huger, had fled but a short time before my arrival.

The intrenchments through which I passed had twenty-one guns mounted, which, properly manned, might have made an effective defence.

I turned the command over to Brig.-Gen. Viele, and appointed him Military Governor of the city, and then returned to the Fort and reported to the President and Secretary of War.

I think it a fair inference that the occupation of Norfolk caused the blowing up of the “dreaded Merrimac,” and thus secured to us the free use of the James River. The army may, therefore, claim at least some share of this much-desired naval success.

I have given you a hasty sketch of this movement, thinking it would be interesting to my friends in New-York.

In great haste, most truly yours,

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