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[175] from Richmond, had reached Gordonsville, rendering its capture by cavalry impossible. Pope at once ordered Hatch, through Banks, to move westwardly across the Blue Ridge from Madison, with 1,500 to 2,000 picked men, and swoop down upon and destroy the railroad westward of that barrier. Hatch commenced this movement; but, soon becoming discouraged, gave it up, and returned, via Sperryville, to Madison. Pope thereupon relieved him from command, appointing Gen. Buford, chief of artillery to Banks's corps, in his stead.

At length, Pope, having joined his army, ordered1 Banks to move forward to Hazel Run, while Gen. McDowell, with Ricketts's division, advanced from Waterloo Bridge to Culpepper, which Crawford's brigade of Banks's corps had already occupied for several days. Buford, with his cavalry, held Madison C. H., picketing the upper fords of the Rapidan, and as low down as Barnett's Ford; while Bayard was posted on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, near the Rapidan river, picketing the fords from Barnett's as low down as Raccoon Ford. The enemy crossing a considerable force in the vicinity of the junction of Buford's and Bayard's pickets, both Generals reported their advance; but it was some days before it was determined whether they were intending to advance in force on Madison C. H., or toward Culpepper C. H. On the 8th, the Rebels pressed Bayard's pickets, and his force fell back toward Culpepper C. H., followed by the enemy.

Pope, under instructions to preserve his communications with Gen. King at Fredericksburg, ordered2 a concentration of his infantry and artillery upon Culpepper, his head quarters, and pushed forward Crawford's brigade toward Cedar (or, rather Slaughter's) Mountain: an eminence commanding a wide prospect to the south and east, and which should have been occupied and fortified by our forces some days before.

Banks, by order. advanced promptly from Hazel Run to Culpepper; built Sigel, still at Sperryville, instead of moving at once, sent to ascertain by which route he should come; thus losing several hours, and arriving too late to be of use. Gen. Banks, by order, moved forward next morning3 toward Cedar Mountain, supporting, with the rest of his corps, the advance of Gen. Crawford, under verbal orders from Pope, which were reduced to writing by his Adjutant, in these words:

Culpepper, Aug. 9th--9:45 A. M.
From Col. Lewis Marshall: Gen. Banks will move to the front immediately, assume command of all the forces in the front, deploy his skirmishers if the enemy approaches. and attack him immediately as soon as he approaches, and be reenforced from here.

Calling on Pope as he left Culpepper, Banks asked if there were further orders, and was referred to Gen. Roberts, Pope's chief of staff, who was to accompany him and indicate the line he was to occupy; which he took: Roberts saying to him repeatedly before he left, “There must be no backing out this day ;” words needing no interpretation, and hardly such as should be addressed by a Brigadier to a Major-General commanding a corps.

1 August 7.

2 August 8.

3 August 9.

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Nathaniel P. Banks (8)
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