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[134]

The battle of Beverly ford.

Colonel F. C. Newhall.
The interest excited by General D. McM. Gregg's narrative of the operations of the Union cavalry in the Gettysburg campaign, has been stimulated by the narrative of Major McClellan, the Adjutant General of the Cavalry of the Army of Northern Virginia; and this latter account, as a pendant to the former, affords an opportunity to emphasize the fact that the Gettysburg campaign was opened actively in Virginia, when General Pleasonton's command crossed the Rappahannock river, on the morning of the 9th of June, 1863, at Kelly's and Beverly fords, and engaged th e command of General J E. B. Stuart. The influence of that day's encounter on the great campaign which it inaugurated, has McClellan has done well to draw renewed attention to this eventful action. t is proper to recognize and applaud the magnanimous and soldierly vein pervading his narrative, where all the merit is awarded to the Northern cavalry which the most enthusiastic trooper among them could possibly lay claim to, and one could not reasonably expect from a Southern source such hearty and striking commendation. What he says of the causes of the decline of the Southern cavalry in numbers and efficiency, is deserving of generous consideration, and to his excuses in their behalf may well be added-what he refrains from saying — that laboring under many disadvantages, unknown to our more favored soldiers, their efforts to maintain themselves in the field were in keeping with the patient courage and self-sacrificing spirit which marked the conduct of the Southern troops, meriting, in a military sense, the admiration of the world.

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H. B. McClellan (2)
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