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Jubal Anderson Early, Ruth Hairston Early, Lieutenant General Jubal A. Early , C. S. A., Autobiographical sketch. (search)
ot enjoy the usual leave of absence, but in August, 1837, a number of my class, myself included, were ordered to Fortress Monroe to drill a considerable body of recruits which were in rendezvous at that place, preparatory to being sent to Florida, where the Seminole War was still in progress. From Fortress Monroe, with several other officers, I accompanied a body of recruits which sailed for Florida, and we landed at Tampa Bay in October, 1837. From Tampa Bay I went to Gary's Ferry, on Black Creek, and there joined my company, which was comprised almost entirely of recruits recently joined. My Captain (Lyon) was an invalid from age and infirmity, and both the First Lieutenants were absent on special duty, so that being the senior Second Lieutenant, I was assigned to the command of the company. In that capacity I went through the campaign of 1837-8 under General Jessup, from the St. John's River south into the Everglades, and was present at a skirmish with the Indians on the Locke
n I got to the river the enemy was holding the bluffs surrounding the White House farm, having made no effort to penetrate General Abercrombie's line or do him other hurt than to throw a few shells among the teamsters there congregated. Next day Gregg's division crossed the Pamunkey dismounted, and Torbert's crossed mounted. As soon as the troops were over, Gregg, supported by Merritt's brigade, moved out on the road to Tunstall's Station to attack Hampton, posted on the west side of Black Creek, Custer's brigade meanwhile moving, mounted, on the road to Cumberland, and Devin's in like manner on the one to Baltimore crossroads. This offer of battle was not accepted, however, and Hampton withdrew from my front, retiring behind the Chickahominy, where his communications with Lee would be more secure. While at the White House I received orders to break up that depot wholly, and also instructions to move the trains which the Army of the Potomac had left there across the peninsul
d troops on board, and we prepared to attack it. The train swept off the obstructions without being thrown from the track, but our fire, delivered at only a few rods' distance, either killed or caused to feign death every one on board, the engineer being one of the first victims, from the unerring fire of Capt. Farley. It is fair to presume that a serious collision took place on its arrival at the White House, for it made extraordinary speed in that direction. The railroad bridge over Black Creek was fired under the direction of Lieut. Burke, and it being now dark, the burning of the immense wagontrain, and the extricating of the teams, involved much labor and delay, and illuminated the country for miles. The roads at this point were far worse than ours, and the artillery had much difficulty in passing. Our march was finally continued by bright moonlight to Talleysville, where we halted three and a half hours for the column to close up. At this point we passed a large hospital,
d the railroad on New-Year's day. Irwin. Rebel Narratives Richmond, December 28, 1863. An officer who participated in the recent fight between the forces under General William L. Jackson and the Yankees under Averill, gives us the following interesting narrative of that gallant affair: On the thirteenth instant, scouts belonging to General Jackson's brigade reported that a Yankee force of about five thousand cavalry, including two batteries of artillery, were advancing down Black Creek, toward Gatewood's, within twelve miles of Warm Springs, in Bath County. Information had at that time been received from General Samuel Jones, that a heavy force of Yankees were also advancing upon Lewisburgh from the Kanawha valley. General Jackson at once concluded that the force of five thousand under Averill would strike for the Tennessee Railroad, by way of the Sweet Springs, and he immediately put his force in motion to intercept them on their return, as he could not pursue them,
n had arrived by this time; one brigade, General Rice commanding, crossed over, met the enemy's skirmishers some five hundred yards beyond, drove them in, and routed a battalion of rebels behind rail-piles in a very handsome manner, capturing seventeen prisoners, and killing and wounding several more. We lost two killed and two or three wounded. This brigade then formed a junction with General Woods's brigade, from Wright's Bridge, at Eden Station. General Hazen's division moved on to Black Creek, sending forward Colonel Oliver's brigade to the Cannoucher. The rest of the corps were encamped near Jenks's Bridge. The Seventeenth corps encamped in the vicinity of Station No. 3, ceasing to destroy the railroad after leaving Ogeechee Church. December 8. By the map there appeared to be a road between the Big and Little Ogeechee Rivers. As the enemy was reported in some force near the Twelve-Mile post, having a line of works in his front, I resolved to turn his position by send
ival of the pontoon at Jenks's Bridge. the Chief-Engineer, Captain C. B. Reese, finding the enemy on the other bank, threw over a regiment of Colonel Oliver's brigade and cleared the way. The bridge was immediately laid. General Corse's division had arrived by this time; one brigade, General Rice commanding, crossed over, met the enemy's skirmishers some five hundred yards beyond, drove them in, and routed a battalion of rebels behind rail-piles in a very handsome manner, capturing seventeen prisoners, and killing and wounding several more. We lost two killed and two or three wounded. This brigade then formed a junction with General Woods's brigade, from Wright's Bridge, at Eden Station. General Hazen's division moved on to Black Creek, sending forward Colonel Oliver's brigade to the Cannoucher. The rest of the corps were encamped near Jenks's Bridge. The Seventeenth corps encamped in the vicinity of Station No. 3, ceasing to destroy the railroad after leaving Ogeechee Church.
gone in the direction of the White House, where Casey was said to be in command. I found no resistance until I reached Tunstall's Station. Here I found a vacated field-work, and captured a cavalry flag near it. This work, as well as the evidence of recent encampments along the line of railroad, showed that one of the great results anticipated from my late expedition — the detaching a large force to protect the enemy's line of communication — had been accomplished. At the crossing of Black Creek, near this place, the enemy had a squadron drawn up, on the farther bank, in line of battle, and what appeared to be artillery on a commanding height beyond. He had destroyed the bridge over this difficult stream, whose abrupt banks and miry bed presented a serious obstacle to our progress. The artillery was ordered up to our front, and a few well-directed rounds of shell dispersed the squadron, as well as disclosed, in a scrambling race, an adroitly formed ambuscade of dismounted men o
ustice which (unintentionally, no doubt) has been done to the brigade I have the honor to command. The report says: General Hampton's brigade had retired through Martinsburg on the Tuscarora road, when General Stuart arrived and made disposition to attack. This phraseology implies that the enemy had advanced on Martinsburg through my lines, and had driven in my brigade. The following statement will show that such was not the case. As you are aware, my line extended on the Potomac from Black Creek to the mouth of the Opequon. When General Lee joined me, upon consultation with Colonel Lee, (who was in command of the brigade the day before the advance of the enemy,) he said that if his pickets were driven in, he would make a stand at Williamston's cross-roads, and, if forced to retire, would fall back to the Stone Bridge, which he would hold to the last extremity. On the morning of the first October, a courier from Colonel Lee informed me that the enemy were advancing on him, and,
Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 8. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), chapter 8.70 (search)
confidence and unquestioning trust of the rank and file in a leader guiding them apparently into the very jaws of the enemy, every step appearing to them to diminish the faintest hope of extrication. Stuart reached Tunstall's station on the York River railroad by dark. A detachment sent to the Pamunky river burned two transports loaded with stores and a train of wagons. At Tunstall's great quantities of provisions and many wagons were captured and burned, and the railroad bridge over Black creek was destroyed. For miles around the country was illuminated by these hilarious cavalrymen. Having thoroughly completed this work, Stuart pushed on to Talleysville, and by daylight had reached Forge bridge over the Chickahominy. Another difficulty now presented itself. The stream was past fording and the bridge destroyed. But a few hours work produced a frail structure over which the artillery could cross, and by one o'clock in the afternoon the whole command was safe from molestation
0. Ground Squirrel Church and Yellow Tavern May 11. Diamond Hill May 11. Brook Church or Fortifications of Richmond May 12. Meadow Bridge May 12. Jones' Bridge May 17. Haxall's Landing May 18. Milford May 20. Haw's Shop May 28. Old Church May 29-30. Cold Harbor May 31-June 1. About Cold Harbor June 1-7. Sumner's Upper Bridge and McGee's Mills June 2. Sheridan's Trevillian Raid June 7-24. Elliott's Mills June 8. Trevillian Station June 11-12. Black Creek, Tunstall Station, June 21. White House, St. Peter's Church, June 21. St. Mary's Church June 24. Second Swamp June 28. Siege operations against Petersburg and Richmond June, 1864, to April, 1865. Warwick Swamp and Lee's Mill July 12. Deep Bottom July 27-28. New Market July 28. Malvern Hill July 29. Lee's Mills July 30. Near Sycamore Church August 9. Gravel Hill August 14. Strawberry Plains August 14-18. Deep Run August 16. Nelson's Farm August 18.
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