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‘ [502] it would have to carry a haversack.’ Early's cavalry, on the 30th, followed the enemy as far as Middle river.

On the 1st of October the Confederate forces moved to the vicinity of Mt. Sidney: Gordon, Kershaw and Pegram marching by the direct old Winchester road, to the Willow Spout, and then down the Valley turnpike to three miles beyond Mt. Sidney; while Ramseur and Wharton moved by the Mt. Meridian road and across by Piedmont to within three miles of Mt. Sidney. The cavalry took position along North river. On the 2d, Sheridan's cavalry drove in the Confederate pickets near Mt. Crawford, but the Stonewall brigade, of Gordon's division, drove them back and held the turnpike bridge over North river at that point. The cavalry had an engagement with the enemy at Bridgewater, forcing Custer's Federal division of cavalry to retire, by a well-planned attack on his front and flanks. Quiet reigned on the 3d and 4th, with the exception of some skirmishing along the line of North river. On the 5th, Gordon advanced to near Naked creek and Brig.-Gen. Thomas L. Rosser joined the army with his cavalry brigade of some 600 service and toil-worn men and horses, which had come up from Richmond by way of Lynchburg. This brigade was attached to Fitz Lee's division, to the command of which Rosser was assigned, Wickham having resigned.

On the morning of the 6th the enemy left the camps near Harrisonburg, Mt. Crawford and Bridgewater, after destroying crops, burning buildings in every direction, before and during their march, and driving before them all the live stock, both old and young, they could find. The Confederate cavalry was soon in pursuit, and the infantry, Gordon in front, followed at 1 a. m., and marched to the vicinity of Harrisonburg; three of the divisions encamping beyond that town. Lomax's cavalry went by the Keezletown road to Peale's, while Rosser, with Fitz Lee's division, took the back road and fell on the enemy's rear at Brock's gap, with vigor, capturing a portion of its train and pursuing it to Timberville. Kershaw had reinforced Early, at Brown's gap, with 2,700 muskets for duty and Cutshaw's artillery, about making up for his losses at Winchester and Fisher's Hill, and he had determined to attack Sheridan on the 6th if he had not retreated down the Valley.

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