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[100] and an attack upon a city of two hundred thousand inhabitants at the beginning of the march. The only way, therefore, of getting communication with Washington for troops from the North is over the Baltimore and Ohio Railway, or marching from the west. Commodore Dupont, at the navy yard, has given me instructions of the fact in accordance with these general statements, upon which I rely. I have therefore thought I could rely upon these statements as to time it will take to proceed in marching from Havre-de-Grace to Washington. My proposition is to join with Colonel Lefferts, of the Seventh Regiment of New York. I propose to take the fifteen hundred troops to Annapolis, arriving there to-morrow about four o'clock, and occupy the capital of Maryland, and thus call the State to account for the death of Massachusetts men, my friends and neighbors. If Colonel Lefferts thinks it more in accordance with the tenor of his instructions to wait rather than go through Baltimore, I still propose to march with this regiment. I propose to occupy the town, and hold it open as a means of communication. I have then but to advance by a forced march of thirty miles to reach the capital, in accordance with the orders I at first received, but which subsequent events, in my judgment, vary in their execution, believing, from the telegraphs, that there will be others in great numbers to aid me. Being accompanied by officers of more experience, who will be able to direct the affair, I think it will be accomplished. We have no light batteries; I have therefore telegraphed to Governor Andrew to have the Boston Light Battery put on shipboard at once to-night to help me in marching on Washington. In pursuance of this plan, I have detailed Captains Devereux and Briggs, with their commands, to hold the boat at Havre-de-Grace.

Eleven, A. M.—Colonel Lefferts has refused to march with me. I go alone at three o'clock, P. M., to execute this imperfectly written plan. If I succeed, success will justify me. If I fail, purity of intention will excuse want of judgment or rashness.

This despatch of General Butler is inaccurate and obscure. When he speaks of Havre-de-Grace, he means Perryville, as Perryville is on the northern side of the Susquehanna, and Havre-de-Grace is on the southern side. When he says, ‘If Colonel Lefferts thinks it more in accordance with the tenor of his instructions to wait rather than go through Baltimore,’ he means rather than go through Annapolis; for Baltimore

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Lefferts (4)
John A. Andrew (2)
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