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[597] Early's Brigade, of Ewell's Division, on what is known as the Sandy Ford dam, a point two miles below the Springs, to protect the men engaged in repairing the bridge at the Springs, over which the army was to pass. But this able plan was defeated by heavy rains, which fell the night before, and swelled the river to such an extent as to interrupt work on the bridge. This enforced delay enabled the Federal general to anticipate his opponent in the occupation of Lee's ridge, and secured to him the advantage of position which Lee had been maneuvring to obtain. Prompted by his military genius, Lee determined to cross the Rappahannock higher up, at Hinson's ford, and marching through Upper Fauquier to gain Pope's rear and compel him to engage battle on other ground than that on which the Federal army was so strongly posted. In pursuance of this plan, Jackson began his movement through the country above designated, until he struck Pope's line of communication at Bristow Station and Manassas Junction, as Stuart had before struck it at Catlett's Station. But the blow delivered by Jackson was a far more serious one; for, in order to regain his lost ground, the Federal commander was compelled to fight the second battle of Manassas. When Jackson struck the railroad at Bristow Station, where the sound of his cannon first apprised Pope of his whereabouts, he left General Ewell to guard the crossings of Broad run. He then moved down the railroad to Manassas, where he captured, in addition to several trains of cars, a large amount of army supplies, all of which were destroyed, except such as could be applied to immediate use. When this capture was first reported to the enemy, it was supposed to have been made by one of Stuart's raiding parties, and in consequence a New Jersey brigade of infantry, stationed below Manassas, was ordered up to retake the place. Possessed with this belief, the command marched to within a short distance of the fortifications, when it was found that it had to cope with Jackson's infantry, instead of Stuart's cavalry. The guns from the fortification opened upon the advancing Federals in front, while on their left flank they were assailed by Braxton's Battery. In this trying situation the brigade behaved in a soldierly manner, and marched from the field with ranks unbroken and colors flying. But when they reached the woods they broke when they were charged by a detachment of twenty of the Black Horse, commanded by Jackson in person, and many prisoners were taken.

Noiselessly and swiftly Jackson traversed the country between Hinson's ford and Bristow Station. With such caution was his march conducted, under the shelter of forest lands, by day, no campfires

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