Fort Pocahontas, VA., September 26, 1864.
I desire that you will take 200 men from the Second New Hampshire and Sixteenth New York Heavy Artillery and twenty mounted men of the First U.S. Colored Cavalry, with two days rations and forty rounds of ammunition per man, and embark at 3 o'clock to-morrow morning on the gun-boat Mosswood and a barge, which she will take in tow. You will then proceed up the Chickahominy to Hog Neck and disembark on the left bank about ten miles above the mouth of the river. You will then push into the country some four or five miles and sweep down to Barrett's Ferry, near the mouth of the Chickahominy, gathering such horses, mules, cattle, and sheep as may be useful to the army, and taking along with you such colored men and their families as desire to come within our lines. If you find any considerable amount of corn you may seize that also if you can find means to transport it to your boats. You are required particularly to examine the country, and especially along the river for torpedoes, which it is believed are concealed there, and to make diligent inquiry of all the people whom you may chance to meet in relation to a party of soldiers who, on the 19th instant, came from Richmond with torpedoes, as it is believed. You wilt not allow officers or men to enter the dwellings of the people for the purpose of disturbing the occupants, and you will take no other property but animals and grain which will be useful in subsisting the army and affording it transportation. The Mosswood, after you have disembarked, will drop down the river to Barrett's Ferry, where you will re-embark your command when you deem that nothing useful can be accomplished by prolonging your stay. At furthest, you will not remain absent more than two days.
-The war of the rebellion: a compilation of the official records of the Union and Confederate armies. ; Series 1- Volume 42 (Part II)
A description of the Mosswood from the following January . . .
"Propeller Mosswood, drawing nine feet of water; new and excellent boat (chartered by Government); mounts two 30-pounder Parrotts; crew, thirty-four men."
-The war of the rebellion: a compilation of the official records of the Union and Confederate armies. / Series 1- Volume 46 (Part II)