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[341] Richmond for the purpose of capturing and burning the city, releasing the Federal prisoners, and bringing off or killing the Confederate authorities. This raid proved a ridiculous failure, its approach to Richmond being prevented by some home guards and local troops composed of employees in the departments, while Hampton dispersed a part of it with a few of his cavalry hastily gotten up. The force moving on Charlottesville retired from before a few pieces of artillery which had no support.

After this affair was settled I took the benefit of my short leave — the only indulgence of the kind asked for or received by me during the, whole war.

I returned to my division about the middle of March, and assumed command, finding it in its old position, nothing serious having occurred during the winter.

What was left of Hoke's brigade had been detached and sent under General Hoke to North Carolina, where it participated in some movements, including the capture of the town of Plymouth, with its garrison, by Hoke. It did not return to the division until after the commencement of the subsequent campaign, though it took part in the defence of Petersburg and the attack on Butler by General Beauregard.

We remained in position in our old place until the opening of the spring campaign. In the meantime Major General U. S. Grant had been assigned to the command of all the armies of the United States, with the rank of Lieutenant General, and had come to take immediate command of the army confronting us, which army was being very greatly strengthened by recruits, drafted men, and other troops.

The Army of the Potomac under Meade had been consolidated into three corps instead of five, to-wit: the 2nd, and 6th, and 9th corps under Burnside, which had been very greatly increased, was added to the force in our front. The Army of the Potomac, and the 9th corps, with the artillery and cavalry, the latter having been largely increased, constituted Grant's immediate command,

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