HEADQUARTERS IN THE FIELD,
May 25, 1864--7.30 a.m. (Received 5 p.m.)
Maj. Gen. Fitzhugh Lee, lately promoted, made, with cavalry, infantry, and artillery, an attack upon my post at Wilson's Wharf, north side of James River, below Fort Powhatan, garrisoned by two regiments, all negro troops, Brigadier-General Wild commanding, and was handsomely repulsed. Before the attack Lee sent a flag, stating he had force enough to take the place, demanded its surrender, and in that case the garrison should be turned over to the authorities at Richmond as prisoners of war, but if this proposition was rejected he would not be answerable for consequences when he took the place. General Wild replied, "We will try that." Re-enforcements were at once sent, but fight was over before their arrival. Loss not yet reported. Dispatch relating to Lee being over South Anna received. Will be ready to move on the instant.
BENJ. F. BUTLER,
Hon. EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.