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[97] They were pushed back from Newport, and Crook, followed by McCausland, started across Salt Pond mountain toward Union, skirmishing at Gap mountain with Jackson and reaching Meadow Bluff on the 19th.

Averell, with the other Federal column, had captured some of the Eighth Virginia in Tazewell county, but found Saltville strongly held by Gens. John H. Morgan and W. E. Jones, and avoiding that point, his real destination, marched to Wytheville, fought a battle on the 10th with Morgan and Jones, and then by a narrow margin won a race to Dublin, and crossed the river in safety, the Confederates being prevented from following by the swollen waters and the destruction of the railroad and bridges. He then joined General Crook at Union. Thus, with some assistance, the Confederate army of Western Virginia had defeated the main purposes of this formidable raid, saved Lynchburg from attack, and prevented the contemplated junction of Crook and Sigel.

Further down the great valley in the same month of May, the West Virginians in other commands participated in a still more decided check given the other column of invading Federals. Brigadier-General Imboden, in command of the Valley district since July, 1863, broke camp May 2d, at Mount Crawford, and moved to Woodstock to observe Sigel, who was coming up the valley with Sullivan's and Stahel's divisions and five batteries. Imboden's whole force then was a little less than 1,500 men, included in the Sixty-second infantry, mounted, Col. George H. Smith; Twenty-third cavalry, Col. Robert White; Eighteenth cavalry, Col. George W. Imboden; Gilmor's Maryland battalion; Davis' Maryland battalion, McNeill's rangers, and McClanahan's battery. As soon as he had discovered the strength of the approaching enemy he fell back to Mount Jackson. By skillful maneuvers he dealt severe blows to Sigel's reconnoissances and held him back, while reinforcements came up from Breckinridge.

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