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[139] save one brigade, without being halted, were ordered to move to the right and left of the place to unite in its rear. These movements were begun and executed under cover, but before their execution was much advanced, it became apparent to me that the enemy was retreating, and I ordered the Alabama brigade, Colonel O'Neal commanding, to advance rapidly upon the town; which was done. I,was mortified to learn that the enemy, abandoning his tents, a few stores, &c., had left his cavalry and artillery to keep our cavalry in check, and had some time before retreated with his infantry towards Charlestown, without being discovered. I found that the approaches to the town were well defended by rifle pits and earthworks for guns, and that with an adequate force it was capable of being strongly defended. It had, however, been held by a force too small to admit of a successful defence against my command. The enemy's force there consisted of two small regiments of infantry, one of cavalry, and a battery of rifle guns, in all about 1,800 men, under the command of Colonel McReynolds. Neither my troops nor General Jenkins' cavalry suffered any loss, the enemy firing only a few rounds of artillery after my arrival. A portion of General Jenkins' men had been skirmishing during the afternoon of the previous day, and on the morning of the 13th, and had lost a few men, among them Lieutenant Charles Norvell who was wounded and captured in a gallant charge upon the enemy near Nineveh.

After securing such stores as were at all valuable, the division was again put in motion towards Martinsburg. General Jenkins had already proceeded in pursuit of the enemy, by a road west of Berryville. One portion of his command, under my orders, pursued him by the Charlestown road. Just before reaching the road to Summit Point, I was informed by an officer of cavalry that the enemy pursued that route, and later that he had gone towards Winchester. I followed him to Summit Point, where we bivouacked, after having marched about twenty miles, not including the wide detours made at Berryville by the brigades of Daniel, Doles, Ramseur and Iverson, in the effort to surround the enemy.

Major Sweeny's battalion, of Jenkins' brigade, which had been put in pursuit of the enemy under my direct orders, overtook his rear guard near the Opequon creek, and made a most gallant charge upon it, capturing a piece of artillery, which they were unable to hold, the enemy being too strong for them. Major Sweeny, who acted very gallantly in this affair, was very badly wounded in the

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A. G. Jenkins (4)
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