A rebel account.
Baltimore, Tuesday, July 2, 1861.A correspondent in Winchester, Va., has forwarded the following account of the skirmish between the pickets of the Union and rebel forces near Romney It is an extract from a letter addressed to the Hon. J. M. Mason at Winchester, by a gentleman in Col. McDonald's regiment, dated:
Headquaters, Romney, June 27-4 A. M.Yesterday (Wednesday) Richard Ashby left, with a portion of his command, twenty-one strong, from Capt. T. Ashby's company, on a scouting expedition to Maryland. Dividing his command into three bodies, he, with six men, met a strong force of United States dragoons, regulars, and made a running fight with them, killing a number of the enemy. Himself and three of his men are missing, but two escaped, and we fear that they have been killed, as their horses were led off by the enemy. Capt. Ashby, who was also scouting with six men, hearing of the fight, immediately started in pursuit to rescue or avenge his brother. On his way he was joined by four of his men, making eleven in all. They came upon the enemy, 40 strong, hid in a gully filled with brushwood, upon the opposite side of the river, near Patterson's Creek Bridge. The enemy commenced firing upon him, when he ordered a charge, fording the river in the face of a destructive fire, and charging upon and completely routing them, they leaving all their horses behind them. Ashby's loss was two killed and two wounded, and four horses killed. His horse was killed under him. Their loss was eight or ten killed. Ashby secured enough horses, one of which was his brother's, to mount his men; but, owing to his small force, was compelled to leave others behind. Dick Ashby was terribly cut up, one of his eyes being shot out, and his head and neck badly cut by balls. Upon hearing of the fight, I immediately started for the scene of action, asking the Captain to accompany me, which he willingly did. We went to Ashby's camp, located upon the farm of Col. Washington, six miles from here, but finding that the enemy were in force between us and the wounded men, that they (the enemy) had returned, and that Capt. Ashby had gone in pursuit of them with his whole force and Capt. Myers's company, we returned to this place, and are now waiting to lend our aid at the weakest point. It is reported that a strong force of the enemy is approaching upon the north-west turnpike. We are not only ready for them, but, having reliable information that the enemy, 100 strong, are posted in Paddy Town, we have sent a force to surprise them. The expedition left before I returned from Ashby's Camp, or I would have joined them. Captain Ashby had 40 shots fired at him, and his escape was miraculous. His horse was short twice, and killed under him, and he was wounded slightly in the leg, which has not prevented him from pursing the enemy. This is a fighting regiment, the chaplain and surgeon fighting first and praying and doctoring afterward.