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[562] retreated so precipitately as to lose few prisoners. Hill returned at night to his intrenchments, and the next morning the 2d corps reoccupied the lines from which it had been driven and the 6th corps formed on its left obliquely toward the Weldon road.

Wilson and Kautz were followed in their raid by W. H. F. Lee's division of cavalry which, however, was unable to prevent the tearing up of the Lynchburg R. R. from near Petersburg to Burkeville, and of the Danville road from Burkeville south to the Staunton River. Here the bridge was defended by local militia who were intrenched with artillery. The river was unfordable, and Lee, attacking in the rear, the Federals decided to rejoin Grant at Petersburg by a circuit to the east.

Unfortunately for them, Hampton's and Fitz-Lee's divisions had just returned from the pursuit of Sheridan's cavalry to Trevillian's Station, where they had had a drawn battle on June 11 and 12. These divisions, aided by W. H. F. Lee's, which had continued in the pursuit, and by two brigades of infantry under Mahone, fell upon Wilson and Kautz on the 29th at Ream's Station and routed them with the loss of 1500 killed, wounded, and captured, and all of their artillery (12 guns) and their wagon-train. They finally made their escape across the Blackwater, burning the bridge behind them, and thus cutting off pursuit by Hampton and Lee. They reached the James at Light House Point on July 2.

They had been absent 10 days, had marched over 300 miles, and torn up 60 miles of railroad. The tracks, however, were soon repaired and traffic restored by all the lines. By the Weldon road, however, it soon became necessary to halt the trains short of Petersburg, and to wagon by a roundabout road into the town.

Between July 6 and 9, Grant had found it necessary to send the three divisions of the 6th corps to Washington to oppose Early and Breckenridge. These, whom we saw sent by Lee, from Cold Harbor, to check Hunter's advance upon Lynchburg, had reached Lynchburg before him. Hunter feared either to attack, or to retreat by the way he had come. After a pause of two days he started, on June 19, through W. Va. via the Great Kanawha, the Ohio River, and the Baltimore and Ohio R. R. to Harper's Ferry. This left the valley open. Early at

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