CAMP PIERPONT, VA., October 18, 1861.
I had just seated myself to write you a nice long letter, when orders came to march to-morrow, requiring me to stir about and give the requisite directions. The enemy, it is understood, have fallen back to their old lines at Bull Run. They have had a force above us at Leesburg, which it is believed they are withdrawing. The object of our expedition is to advance some twelve or fifteen miles to the front, to reconnoitre the country, and also with the hope of cutting off some of their troops coming down from Leesburg. We go with the whole division, some twelve thousand strong, with three batteries of artillery, and if we encounter any of their troops, will have a very pretty chance for a nice little fight of our own. It is very late, and I have to be in the saddle very early. I am quite well.
SOURCE: George Meade, The Life and Letters of George Gordon Meade, Vol. 1, p. 224