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on the 27th, and Maj.-Gen. N. P. Banks was directed to assume command of the army under Patterson, and of the department of the Shenandoah. From Harper's Ferry, on the 21st, Patterson reported that Winchester was abandoned the day before by all armed parties; that Johnston had left to operate on McDowell's right, and that he could not follow because he had but few active troops, all the others being barefooted and ordered home when their term of service should expire. Patterson, on the 23d, was sending his train across the river at Harper's Ferry, intending to go to Washington with all his available force unless ordered to the contrary; but Scott advised him that this force was not wanted at Washington, but it is expected you will hold Harper's Ferry unless threatened by a force well ascertained to be competent to expel you. Patterson replied that he considered the occupation of Harper's Ferry, with his small force, as hazardous, and that not less than 20,000 men were needed t
stinguished, were Munford, Kirkland, Kershaw, Rodes, Featherston, Skinner, Garland, Corse, Cocke, Hunton, Withers, William Smith, Hays, Barksdale, Kemper, Wheat, Terry, Hampton, Shields, Imboden, Allen, Preston, Echols, Cumming, Steuart, A. P. Hill, Pendleton, and others. Stuart, on the 21st, followed the retreating Federals 12 miles beyond Manassas, when his command was so depleted by sending back detachments with prisoners, that he gave up the pursuit and returned to encamp near Sudley church. He advanced to Fairfax Court House on the morning of the 23d, and a little later established his pickets along the Potomac, and in front of Washington, in sight of the dome of the capitol. The infantry of the army was moved to new camps beyond Bull run, with advanced detachments in support of the cavalry. McClellan took command at Washington on the 27th, and at once proceeded to make that city an intrenched camp, to which large numbers of troops were hurried from all the Union States.
.-Gen. Benjamin F. Butler, of the Massachusetts militia, was assigned, on the 22d of May, to the command of the department of Virginia, with headquarters at Old Point Comfort, and nine additional infantry regiments were sent to that place. On the 23d, between 4 and 5 p. m., a Federal regiment made a demonstration against Hampton, greatly alarming the citizens of that place. Maj. J. B. Cary, of the Virginia artillery, in command at Hampton, had made arrangements for the destruction of the brid, I have ventured—and I trust I am not wrong—to duplicate the parts of my dispatches relating to this subject and forward them to the secretary of war. Maj. John B. Hood (subsequently a distinguished Confederate lieutenant-general) was, on the 23d, placed in charge of the cavalry on York river, for the purpose of establishing a camp of instruction and making judicious disposition of the pickets and videttes; the same day Col. D. H. Hill (later a Confederate lieutenant-general) assumed comma
ered all roads leading to Winchester from the north, west and south. Tyler's infantry brigade and Broadhead's cavalry he held in Winchester. On the morning of the 23d, after a careful reconnaissance of the front, it was concluded, as before, that only a small Confederate cavalry force was there, and that Jackson would not venturee 26th, the 40,000 men of his command would march from Fredericksburg to reinforce McClellan's right in front of Richmond. Returning to Washington the night of the 23d, he heard of the attack on Front Royal. The next day more alarming intelligence came, and Fremont was ordered, by telegraph, to move from Franklin to Harrisonburg, he crossed the Massanutton mountains, marched rapidly down the Page valley, and on the 24th fell on Banks' line of retreat, which his attack on Front Royal, on the 23d, had forced from Strasburg, whither he had retired on learning that Ewell had reinforced Jackson at Conrad's store (Elkton). Defeating Banks in a pitched battle at
e but partially successful, in consequence of the rain and the darkness. He began his return march before daylight of the 23d, bringing off 300 prisoners, and recrossed the Rappahannock in the evening of the same day, without molestation, after havand Halleck, which informed Lee fully concerning the strength and the plans of his antagonist. In the afternoon of the 23d, before Stuart cut the railway and the telegraph at Catlett's station, Pope had telegraphed to Halleck: Under present circlutes to these backward movements. Reynolds' division of 6,000 men, from Aquia creek, reported during the forenoon of the 23d, and followed after McDowell. The courage and ready wit of a Confederate soldier are well illustrated by the story thatackson's rear, where they broke their fast of two nights and the intervening day. About 10 o'clock on the night of the 23d, Pope himself, accompanied by the corps of McDowell and the division of Reynolds, reached Warrenton. At that time more th
of that day, Lee and Ewell reached Hanover Junction, having crossed the North Anna at the Telegraph road bridge; Anderson, with the First corps, followed at midday, and Hill, with the Third corps, crossed, at the same place, on the morning of the 23d, when Lee's whole army took position on the south bank of the North Anna, covering the roads leading to Richmond and the junction of the Virginia Central and Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac railroads, thus controlling two railways to his base x ford of the North Anna, and covering the eastward approaches to the line of the Virginia Central railroad. Pickett and Breckinridge were held in reserve, in the rear of the center, near Hanover Junction. The march of the Federal army, on the 23d, was much embarrassed by ignorance of the country and the incorrect and misleading maps used as guides; but by 1 p. m., its Sixth corps, in the advance, reached the vicinity of the North Anna, at the Telegraph bridge, and, later in the afternoon,
orce; on the 22d the march was continued to the vicinity of Strasburg, the army encamping on Hupp's hill. McCausland moved to the vicinity of Front Royal. On the 23d, the enemy's cavalry attacked Early's rear guard near Newtown, but was driven back to Kernstown. McCausland's brigade marched up the North Fork of the Shenandoah fth's brigade, of Wharton's division, and gave up the pursuit. The retreat continued all night, the army reaching Mt. Jackson at an early hour on the morning of the 23d, where it remained in line of battle during the day, skirmishing some with the enemy's cavalry, which came up and threw a few shells, but made no earnest attempt tothe Big Spring, some two miles southwest of Harrisonburg. On the 22d, Wharton marched back to near Staunton, as did also Payne's and Wickham's brigades. On the 23d, two brigades of Wharton's division took cars at Staunton for Gordonsville, to assist in repulsing the movement of cavalry that had crossed the Blue ridge at Cheste
through the pine forests, and fell, in fierce assault, on the left flank of the Second corps, driving it back in confusion, behind defensive works, with a loss of 1,700 men and four guns. The next day the Sixth corps renewed the attempt to reach the railroad, when it was driven back with a loss of 500. Wilson's cavalry reached the railroad, at Reams' Station, nine miles south of Petersburg, on the 22d, and, after breaking the track, moved westward to the Southside railroad, where, on the 23d, after a vigorous attack on the division of W. H. F. Lee, it was driven back, and on the 24th, retreated toward Petersburg, having been turned back from Staunton river bridge by the local militia, closely followed by Lee. Hampton, who had hurried southward from his victory over Sheridan at Trevilian's, joined Lee in the pursuit. Reaching Reams' Station; Wilson found Mahone across his track, with two brigades of infantry, while Lee was closely pressing his rear. Thus assailed, his troops wer