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[605] some hours, to welcome a “ liberating” army. But Early, after a brief halt on the battle-field, was now marching on Washington; and Baltimore, though weakly held, was not to be taken on a gallop. Brig.-Gens. Lockwood and Morris were there; and they soon rallied thousands of loyal citizens, by whom every approach was guarded, and earthworks thrown up in the suburbs which could not be carried without difficulty and delay. Johnson declined the attempt; but a detachment of his horsemen, under Harry Gilmor, made a dash at the Philadelphia railroad near Magnolia station, next morning; burning the long trestle over the inlet known as Gunpowder, stopping there the morning train northward, and robbing passengers and mails.

Early's cavalry advance reached Rockville on the evening of the 10th; his infantry was next day within 6 or 7 miles of Washington; which they actually menaced on the 12th. Gen. Augur, commanding the defenses, pushed out, toward evening, a strong reconnoissance to develop their strength; and a smart skirmish ensued, wherein we had 230 killed and wounded, and the enemy at least as many. If Early had rushed upon Washington by forced marches from the Monocacy, and at once assaulted with desperate energy, he might have taken the city, and might have lost half his army: he must have lost all his army if he had carried the city and attempted to hold it.

Whatever his purpose, it was now too late to do any thing but what he did — retreat across the Potomac, with his cavalry, batteries and trains freshly horsed, 2,500 spare horses, and 5,000 cattle. For the 19th corps (Emory's), ordered from New Orleans by sea, had reached Fortress Monroe a few days previous, and had been sent by Grant to Washington; as had the 6th (Wright's) from before Petersburg, with directions that Gen. Wright should assume command. Had Early waited, his force, now reduced to 15,000, would have been confronted and crushed by one of at least 40,000.

Wright's pursuit was not made in such force as lie should have had, and was timid and feeble. Crossing the Potomac at Edwards's ferry, he moved through Leesburg and Snicker's gap to the Shenandoah ; which he had partially crossed when Early turned1 upon him suddenly and fiercely, driving back his advance with a loss of fully 500. Wright recrossed after the enemy had moved off, but soon returned to Leesburg, and, turning over the command to Crook, repaired to Washington.

Averill, moving from Martinsburg on Winchester, was fought2 near that city, for three hours, by a Rebel force, which he finally worsted; taking 200 prisoners and 4 guns; with a loss of 150 or 200 killed and wounded on either side. The approach of Early from Snicker's gap now compelled him to draw off.

Grant, deceived by advices that Early was returning to Lynchburg and Richmond, ordered the 6th and 19th corps by water to Petersburg, intending to strike a blow with his thus augmented forces before Early could arrive. Hunter was still on his weary way from his miscarriage at Lynchburg — dry rivers, broken railroads, &c., impeding his progress.

1 July 19.

2 July 20.

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