on the map herewith forwarded. The forces opposed, it is worthy remark were about equal in number, yet Johnson had the advantage; his men were veterans, while Gilpin's. with the exception of Clendenin's squadron, had not before been under fire, a circumstance much enhancing the credit gained by them. Relying upon intelligence received the evening the above affair took place, that a division of veterans of the Sixth corps was coming by rail to my reinforcement, about midnight General Tyler was sent to Frederick City with Colonel Brown's command, to prepare for what might occur in the morning. About daybreak a portion of the First brigade of the veterans arrived under Colonel Henry, which was also sent to Frederick. The reports of the enemy continued conflicting as before; some stated that Johnson's cavalry, already whipped by Colonel Gilpin, were all the rebels north of the Potomac; others that McCausland, with a like column, was marching to join Johnson; others again represented Early and Breckinridge behind the Catoctin mountain, with thirty thousand men, moving upon Frederick City. In short, the most reliable intelligence was of a character that reduced the defence of that town to a secondary consideration; if the enemy's force was correctly reported, his designs were upon Washington or Baltimore. In the hope of evolving something definite out of the confusion of news, I went in person to Frederick City, leaving my Inspector-General, Lieutenant-Colonel Catlin, at the railroad bridge to stop such of the veteran regiments as arrived there. The Eleventh Maryland remained with him. My purpose was to conduct a reconnoissance over the mountain, to brush aside, if possible, the curtain that seemed to overhang it. In the midst of preparation for this movement, a telegram from Major-General Sigel reached me, stating that the enemy had that morning retired from before Maryland Heights, and was marching with his main body up the Middletown Valley toward Boonesboro. The question then was — were the rebels marching for Pennsylvania, or coming eastward by the Jefferson or Middletown pikes? I concluded to await events in Frederick City, satisfied they would not be long delayed. As Johnson still held the mountain pass to Middletown, the day (eighth) was spent in trying to draw him into the valley, with such reinforcements as he might have received. A feigned retreat from the town was but partially successful; he came down, but under fire of Alexander's guns, galloped back again. About six o'clock in the afternoon, Colonel Catlin telegraphed me that a heavy force of rebel infantry was moving toward Urbana by the Buckeystown road. This threatened my lines of retreat and the position at Monocacy bridge; what was more serious, it seemed to disclose a purpose to obtain the pike to Washington, important to the enemy for several causes, but especially so if his designs embraced that city, then in no condition, as I understood it, to resist an army like that attributed to Early by General Sigel. I claim no credit for understanding my duty in such a situation; it was self-apparent. There was no force that could be thrown in time between the capital and the rebels but mine, which was probably too small to defeat them, but certainly strong enough to gain time, and compel them to expose their strength. If they were weak, by going back to the bridge I could keep open the communication with General Sigel; on the other hand, if they were ever so strong, it was not possible to drive me from that position, except by turning one of my flanks; if my right, retreat was open by the Washington pike; if my left, the retirement could be by the pike to Baltimore. I made up my mind to fight, and accordingly telegraphed General Halleck: “I shall withdraw immediately from Frederick City, and put myself in position to cover road to Washington, if necessary.” This was done by marching in the night to the railroad bridge, where Brigadier-General Ricketts was in waiting. I had then the following regiments of his division: First brigade, Colonel W. S. Truax commanding, seventeen hundred and fifty strong: One Hundred and Sixth New York, Captain Payne commanding; One Hundred and Fifty-first New York. Colonel Emerson; Fourteenth New Jersey, Lieutenant-Colonel Hall; Tenth Vermont, Colonel Henry; Eighty-seventh Pennsylvania, Lieutenant-Colonel Stahl. Second brigade, sixteen hundred men, Colonel MaClannan commanding; One Hundred and Thirty-eighth Pennsylvania,----; Ninth New York, Colonel Seward; One Hundred and Twenty-sixth Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Ebright; One Hundred and Tenth Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Binkley. The residue of the division it was reported would be up next day. Early in the morning of the ninth disposition for battle was made. The right, forming an extended line from the railroad, was given General Tyler, who, by direction, had left Colonel Brown at the stone bridge on the Baltimore pike, with his command and the company of mounted infantry. Upon the holding that bridge depended the security of my right flank, and the line of retreat to Baltimore. Three companies of Colonel Gilpin's regiment were posted to defend Crum's ford, midway the stone bridge and railroad; Landstreet and Gilpin were held in reserve at the railroad. The battery was divided-Ricketts and Tyler each received three guns. On the left, as it was likely to be the main point of attack, I directed General Ricketts to form his command in two lines across the Washington pike, so as to hold the rising ground south of it and the wooden bridge across the river. Still further to the left, Colonel Clendenin took
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Table of Contents:
Doc . 16 . operations in Tennessee .
Doc . 19 . the siege of Suffolk, Virginia .
Doc . 36 . General Rousseau 's expedition.
Doc . 59 . battles of Spottsylvania , Va: battle of Sunday , May 8 , 1864 .
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