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[70] Meade was also directed to make a movement of troops towards the left, the day before Butler advanced, so as to give the appearance of massing in that direction. ‘The Tenth corps, moving to Bermuda Hundred to-night, will be missed from its position in the morning; and if the enemy can be deceived into thinking they have gone around to the left, it will aid us.’

At this juncture, Grant's cares and responsibilities were crowding upon him from every quarter. as closely as at any period during the war. While arranging the details of Butler's movement, withdrawing troops from the forts on the James, and directing pontoons to be towed out of sight of the enemy—he was obliged to discuss the condition of Canby on the Mississippi river, and the needs of commanders in East Tennessee; to order reinforcements to Sherman, and to consult the Secretary of War about affairs in Missouri and the North-West; at the same time he forwarded the latest news from Sheridan, and wrote an elaborate letter to the government on the subject of the elections in the camps.1

Before dawn on the 29th of September, Butler moved from Deep Bottom; the Eighteenth corps, under Ord, marched by the Varina road, nearest the river; and the Tenth, under Birney, by the Newmarket road; while Kautz, with the cavalry, took the Darbytown road, on the right of the army. All these routes run direct to Richmond, only ten miles north of Deep Bottom. The attack by Ord on the left had been ordered for half-past 3; it was

1 For this very interesting letter see page 167.

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