while the Marylanders dashed upon their flank.
The Federals gave way under this courageous attack and the Confederates
gained the fence which they had occupied, and from that poured volleys into the retreating mass until it got beyond musket range.
The Federal left had, in the meantime, driven in the Confederate
skirmishers, but the defeat of the right forced that to retreat also.
The Bucktails left their commander in the hands of the Confederates
, and lost 55 out of the 125 that went into action.
The Federals retired to Harrisonburg
and the Confederate
guard followed the army toward Port Republic
and his army, as well as the whole South
, mourned the loss of the brave, high-minded and noble Ashby
, who had just been promoted, at the instance of his commander, brigadier-general
, in command of the cavalry of the Valley
Capable and able officers succeeded him, but none was found who could take his place in guarding the outposts or holding back, with a handful of men and a few pieces of artillery, the advance of a whole army of the enemy miles in the rear of the main body of the army of the Valley district.
He was the idol of his men and the beloved of every one who had the honor of knowing him intimately.
His exploits have been embalmed in song and story, and his memory lives with that of Stonewall Jackson
's army enjoyed a well-earned and much-needed rest on the 6th and 7th beside the bright waters and in the green pastures and park-like forests along the road between Cross Keys
, where Ewell
held the rear, and the north bank of the rivers at Port Republic
, where the. advance encamped, the surplus trains having crossed the North
river and gone into camp just beyond Port Republic
between the rivers and on the road to Staunton
A small cavalry force scouted down the river, watching Shields
' slow and toilsome progress over the road through which Jackson
had so lately floundered for nearly three days. Jackson
established his headquarters at Port Republic
, on the line of communication with Staunton
and with General Lee
by way of Mechum River
having ascertained that the rear of Jackson
's army was in position near Cross Keys
, about six miles from Harrisonburg
on the road to Port Republic
, and having concentrated his army, gave orders to advance on