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[371] skirmish took place, in which a number of the enemy were killed, how many the Sergeant does not know. Many bodies were seen on the ground, and several were taken into the court-house and seen there by one of our cavalry, who was a prisoner for a short time and afterwards made his escape.

Five prisoners were captured by our troops. Their names are as follows, viz: (Names not given by General McDowell; and concluding paragraph omitted as unnecessary.)

The above quotations from the official reports of Lieutenant Tompkins and General McDowell are so full of errors that it is due to truth and justice they should be exposed. I repeat that the whole Confederate force at Fairfax Courthouse, on the night of the 31st of May, 1861, was composed of the companies and of the character and description I have heretofore named; and I will add, that the only additional force which came to our assistance was sent for by Colonel Ewell, and was composed of the cavalry companies of Harrison and Wickham, who did not reach the Courthouse until after sunrise, and fully two hours after the enemy had been finally repulsed, by little more than half his number of Captain Marr's rifles.

Lieutenant Tompkins says: “It will be observed, that he was in command of a detachment of Company B, Second Cavalry, consisting of fifty men, with Second Lieutenant David S. Gordon's Second Dragoons temporially attached.”

He subsequently adds: “Captains Cary, Fearing and Adjutant Frank, of the Fifth New York State Militia, accompanied the command as volunteers.” General McDowell says: “It appears that Company B, Second Cavalry, commanded by Lieutenant Tompkins, (aggregate about seventy-five).” General Bonham, after an examination of the three prisoners taken, reports, “the enemy was eighty to eighty-five strong.” Colonel Ewell in his official report says: “Three prisoners were brought in, who separately reported their strength at eighty, rank and file.” And two of the prisoners taken by the enemy, intelligent men, with whom I have communicated, think the enemy's force must have been from seventy-five to one hundred men. All this testimony with what I saw, satisfied me that Lieutenant Tompkins had his company, and not a detachment thereof with him, and that his force was about eighty men, and not fifty, as he reports.

Lieutenant Tompkins says: “Upon approaching the town the picket-guard was surprised and captured.” This was on the Fall's church road, about a mile below the town. One of Marr's pickets was captured, made his escape in town, and joined us, as he says, in the fight

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May 31st, 1861 AD (1)
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