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‘ [447] ground, making a formidable obstacle, and every possible approach was raked by artillery.’ As far as the eye could reach, the works appeared to be of the same impregnable character. The exhaustion of our force, the lightness of its artillery, and the information that two corps of the enemy's forces had just arrived in Washington, in addition to the veteran reserves and hundred-days men, and the parapets lined with troops, led us to refrain from making an assault, and to retire during the night of the 12th. On the morning of the 14th General Early recrossed the Potomac, bringing off the prisoners captured at Monocacy and everything else in safety, including a large number of beef-cattle and horses. There was some skirmishing in the rear between our cavalry and that which was following us, and on the afternoon of the 14th there was artillery firing across the river at our cavalry watching the fords.

Meantime General Hunter had arrived at Harpers Ferry and united with Sigel, and some skirmishing took place; General Early determined to concentrate near Strasburg, however, so as to enable him to put the trains in safety, and mobilize his command to make an attack. On the 22d he moved across Cedar Creek toward Strasburg, and so posted his force as to cover all the roads from the direction of Winchester. Learning on the next day that a large portion of the column sent after him from Washington was returning, and that the Army of West Virginia, under Crook, including Hunter's and Sigel's forces, with Averill's cavalry, was at Kernstown, he determined to attack at once.

After the enemy's skirmishers had been driven in, it was discovered that his left flank was exposed, and General Breckinridge was ordered to move Echols's division under cover of some ravines on our right and attack that flank. The attacking division struck the enemy's left flank in open ground, doubling it up and throwing his whole line into great confusion. The other divisions then advanced, and his rout became complete. He was pursued by the infantry and artillery beyond Winchester. Our loss was very light; his loss in killed and wounded was severe. The whole defeated force crossed the Potomac, and took refuge at Maryland Heights and Harpers Ferry. The road was strewed with debris of the rapid retreat—twelve caissons and seventy-two wagons having been abandoned, and most of them burned.

On the 26th the Confederate force moved to Martinsburg:

While at Martinsburg, [says General Early in his memoir] it was ascertained beyond all doubt that Hunter had been again indulging in his favorite mode of warfare, and that, after his return to the Valley, while we were near Washington, among other outrages, the private residences of Mr. Andrew Hunter, a member of the Virginia Senate, Mr. Alexander R. Boteler, an ex-member of the

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