Doc. 106.-fight at Slaterville, Va. Fought May 9, 1862.
New-York times account
New-Kent Court-House, Va., Saturday Evening, May 10, 1862.A lively skirmish occurred yesterday at a place called Slaterville, two miles below here, which reflects much credit upon our officers and men engaged in it. At three o'clock P. M. eighty men of the Sixth regular cavalry had advanced to Slaterville, when a considerable force of the enemy was observed directly in front. Our force charged upon the rebels, and obliged them to retreat precipitately to the woods behind a hill on the left of the main road, after which we occupied the hill, with two pieces of artillery, and two companies of infantry — the Second Rhode Island and the Ninety-eighth Pennsylvania volunteers--besides the cavalry previously mentioned. Shortly after the enemy reappeared from the woods with three squadrons of cavalry, and two pieces of artillery, supported by one regiment infantry. He fired four times in quick succession, which was responded to by our guns, when the Second Rhode Island was ordered forward to act as skirmishers, and the Ninety-eighth Pennsylvania formed in line of battle in the rear of the artillery and cavalry. These arrangements completed, the skirmishers continually advanced toward the enemy, while the cavalry also proceeded forward until within fifty yards of the enemy, where it halted and the enemy's fire ceased. The Ninety-eighth Pennsylvania then advanced toward the edge of the woods, when the rebels retreated into an open field. Our artillery was ordered into position, and upon receiving two shots from the enemy returned them with much execution. A contraband who witnessed the affair, subsequently came into camp, and stated that the rebels carried fourteen of their number wounded from the field. One of our shots penetrated a house in the immediate vicinity, by passing through the front-door, thence into a bedroom, tearing a bed to ribbons, going out finally through a rear-window. A man, who occupied the house, had just risen from the bed, having thrown himself upon it as a means of protection from the shots of the contending parties. He concluded, however, that neither the bed nor the house was a safe harbor, and was preparing to leave for the woods when the shot entered the building. After the exchange of shots by the artillery, preparations were made by our men to make another charge upon the enemy, observing which he retreated and did not return. The charge made by our cavalry at the commencement of the skirmish was splendidly executed, and elicited the praise of the General in command of the troops. The rebel cavalry was advancing toward our force, when our cavalry formed in line and waited the approach of the enemy. When he had arrived sufficiently near, our troops made a dash upon him, cutting their way through the line and causing the utmost confusion to prevail, after which they returned to quarters by a road leading through the woods on the right of the enemy. An incident which shows the barbarity of the rebels occurred on the field of action. At the time of the charge made by the cavalry, one of our men was wounded, when the rebels immediately drew their sabres and literally cut him to pieces. They also rifled his pockets, and even severed his finger for the purpose of getting off a ring. The rebel loss during the engagement was ten killed, fourteen wounded, and two taken prisoners. Our loss was four killed and three wounded. One of the prisoners, named J. Ryan, of the Eighteenth Mississippi volunteers, was taken by the Signal corps.