Brig. Gen. George F. Shepley, commander of the Union District of Eastern Virginia, sent a telegram to Lt. Col. E. W. Smith, assistant adjutant general of the Department of Virginia, seeking clarification on a telegram that he received that apparently dismissed him from his command.
He noted that the telegram was confusing about when he was to be relieved as he was president of a Court Martial that was still in session.
Shepley's friend and fellow soldier, Gen. Benjamin Butler, who had commanded the Department of Virginia and under whom Shepley served, was relieved of his duty in January 1865.
The telegram is an official copy that Shepley kept in his files.
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