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Battle of Chancellorsville--report of General R. E. Lee.

[The following report was printed by order of the Confederate Congress; but as it is one of deep interest and importance, and so rare that we have been unable to meet frequent demands for it by military students, we deem it best to give it a place in our Papers. We print from an original Ms. in our possession.]

headquarters army of Northern Virginia, September 21st, 1863.
General S. Cooper, A. and I. G. C. S. A., Richmond, Va.:
General — After the battle of Fredericksburg, the army remained encamped on the south side of the Rappahannock until the latter part of April. The Federal army occupied the north side of the river opposite Fredericksburg, extending to the Potomac. Two brigades of Anderson's division — those of Generals Mahone and Posey--were stationed near United States Mine or Bark Mill ford; and a third, under command of General Wilcox, guarded Banks' ford. The cavalry was distributed on both flanks — Fitzhugh Lee's brigade picketing the Rappahannock above the mouth of the Rapidan, and W. H. F. Lee's near Port Royal. Hampton's brigade had been sent into the interior to recruit. General Longstreet, with two divisions of his corps, was detached for service south of James river in February, and did not rejoin the army until after the battle of Chancellorsville. With the exception or the engagement between Fitz. Lee's brigade and the enemy's cavalry, near Kelly's ford, on the seventeenth of March, 1863, of which a brief report has been already forwarded to the Department, nothing of interest transpired during this period of inactivity.

On the fourteenth of April intelligence was received that the enemy's cavalry was concentrating on the upper Rappahannock. Their efforts to establish themselves on the south side of the river were successfully resisted by Fitz. Lee's brigade and two regiments of W. H. F. Lee's, the whole under the immediate command of General Stuart. About the twenty-first small bodies of infantry appeared at Kelly's ford and the Rappahannock bridge, and almost at the same time a demonstration was made opposite Port Royal, where a party of infantry crossed the river about the twenty-third. These movements were evidently intended to conceal the designs of the enemy, but, taken in connection with the reports of scouts, indicated that the Federal army, now commanded by Major-General Hooker, was about to resume active operations. At half-past

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Fitzhugh Lee (3)
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September 21st, 1863 AD (1)
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