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[470] Harper's Ferry, when we soon rejoined the brigade, and by five A. M. formed squadron on Bolivar Heights.

Thus ended one of the most desperate cavalry fights of the war, considering the number actually engaged; our brigade not numbering over eight hundred men, having become reduced by detachments sent to different points, and men left in the rear dismounted, their animals having become used up by the hard work of the past two months. At different times our fire ceased entirely, from want of ammunition. A remarkable circumstance is, that, to our knowledge, not one prisoner was taken on either side, except those of ours so badly wounded that they could not move, and were left behind when we were driven back. General Gregg accompanied us to Shepherdstown, and McIntosh's brigade was posted on our left, toward Harper's Ferry, but, with the exception of that portion of the First Pennsylvania referred to, did not participate. Captain Fisher, to whom I have referred, is well known to Philadelphia merchants as an old merchant of Uniontown, Pennsylvania. A gallant soldier, a gentleman, and a pleasant companion, his loss will be deeply regretted.

Richmond despatch account.

army of Northern Virginia, July 18, 1863.
The heavy cannonading heard in the direction of Shepherdstown Thursday originated from a severe cavalry fight, of which you have been advised by telegraph. I will now furnish you the particulars as they have been ascertained.

After the return of General Lee's army to Virginia, the enemy, evidently too much crippled for immediate pursuit, and desirous of ascertaining our movements, and feeling our position, despatched a large body of cavalry down the river to accomplish this object, if possible. They crossed at Harper's Ferry, where pontoon-bridges were thrown across for the purpose, and proceeded up the river as far as Shepherdstown, where they arrived on Wednesday; then coming down the Leetown and Winchester road to the distance of about five miles, halted. Meantime, Fitzhugh Lee, who was in the vicinity, and hearing of their whereabouts, proceeded up the Shepherdstown road for the purpose of checking the enemy's advance. He arrived in sight of the Yankees Thursday morning, which brought on desultory skirmishing and cannonading, which continued throughout the day until about four o'clock P. M. Then dismounting his men and advancing, the fight became general along both. lines, the enemy having also dismounted.

A charge was ordered, and our men rushed upon the enemy, who were driven back two or three miles, where they sought the protection of a stone wall extending to the right and left of the road, their right and left flank stretching some distance either extremity of the wall. Here the fight raged for some time, our men frequently charging up to the enemy's front, and delivering their fire with telling effect, but exposed to an incessant fire of shot, shell, and small arms from the enemy, who had availed themselves of the protection of the stone wall, and every rock, tree, and stump that afforded the least shelter. While our men were in dangerous proximity, without the slightest shelter to cover their movements, bodies of the enemy's cavalry would frequently charge up to the stone wall, file to the right and left, rapidly deliver their fire, and gallop into a wood that skirted the wall on either side. Later in the afternoon, when the fight had progressed some time, the Fourteenth, Sixteenth, Seventeenth, and Thirty-sixth battalion, of Jenkins's brigade, came up from near Martinsburgh, and reenforced General Lee, taking a position on the left of the road toward Shepherdstown. During the remainder of the day they rendered gallant and efficient service with their long-range guns, and participated with their comrades, previously on the field, in the subsequent charges on the enemy's position. The enemy was repulsed and driven back on the right and left, but so effectual was their protection behind the wall, they were enabled to hold that position until night. Our line of battle extended about the distance of a mile and a half to the right and left of the road, the enemy's about the same distance, with reserves — in supporting distance..

We had three pieces of artillery, and the enemy it is believed about the same number, planted in an admirable position on the right of the stone wall and in front of the woods, commanding the whole field in front. During the entire engagement our officers and men displayed the utmost gallantry. General Jenkins being absent by reason of a wound in the head received at Gettysburgh, his men were led by Colonel Ferguson, the whole under command of Fitzhugh Lee. Our loss, not yet definitely known, is unofficially reported at from seventy-five to one hundred from all causes. We lost no prisoners. The loss of the enemy is estimated at from one hun. dred and fifty to two hundred. Night having drawn her sable curtain over the scene, the enemy fell back from this position behind the stone wall, leaving their dead and wounded in our hands, and our men in possession of the field. They retreated down the river road toward Harper's Ferry, and it is reported have since gone to the other side of the river.

The casualties, as usual latterly, were considerable among the officers, who greatly exposed themselves leading and encouraging the men, and forming conspicuous marks for the enemy's sharp-shooters. Colonel Drake, First Virginia, and Adjutant Barbour, Seventeenth Virginia, are reported killed; the latter while cheering the men to a charge. Colonel Gregg, of Lee's brigade, reported mortally wounded, and Major Jos. H. Newman, of the Sixteenth, wounded in the head.

Prisoners taken report that the enemy was commanded by General Gregg.

I should mention that the enemy, on their entrance into Shepherdstown, found fifty or sixty

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Fitzhugh Lee (5)
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