An hour later, and there was an ominous roar behind.
The enemy was thundering on our rear.
I know that the moment was painful to many, but no soldier's heart seemed to shrink from the desperate shock.
Back and forth dashed hot riders.
Messengers here, orders there, composure and decision where it should be, with determination to wrest triumph from the jaws of disaster.
As yet every thing had prospered, and at noon a brighter ray flashed athwart our dreary horizon.
Averill — our dashing Ashby --had moved with the vanguard, met eight companies of rebel cavalry, charged them, routed them, pursued them miles beyond our reach, and returned in triumph with sixty prisoners and horses, leaving nine dead foes on the field.
He explained it modestly, but I saw old generals thank him for the gallant exploit — not the first of his youthful career.
Gen. Keyes had sent a section of artillery with the vanguard, Averill's cavalry escorting it. The rebels charged at the guns, not perceiving our