until his train had forded the river.
The First Georgia then fell behind the Twenty-third Virginia, which in the meantime had taken an advanced position, and that defended the train until the First Georgia formed again, further on. Thus skirmishing and retiring, the retreat was skillfully conducted, without loss, to Carrick's ford of Cheat river
, 3 1/2 miles beyond Kaylor
's. That ford, wide and deep, was now swollen by recent rains, making the crossing difficult, so that some wagons were stalled and abandoned.
This delay enabled the Federals
to close up, but Taliaferro
's Twenty-seventh Virginia, posted on the high bank on the far side of Cheat river
, joined in a lively engagement, known as the battle of Carrick's Ford, in which infantry and artillery engaged from opposite sides of the river, and the Federals
were twice driven back, with considerable damage from Lanier
continued to fight until his men had expended nearly all their cartridges and the artillery had been withdrawn, when, believing that the enemy were attempting to turn his flank, he ordered his regiment to retire, which, although it had lost nearly 30 in killed and wounded, it did very reluctantly.
He then moved on to the opposite side of the next ford, where he found General Garnett
, who directed him to halt his regiment around a nearby protecting turn of the road, and send him. some good riflemen, remarking: ‘This is a good place, behind this driftwood, to post skirmishers.’
sent him a whole company, from which he selected 10 sharpshooters and ordered the others back to the regiment.
While posting his command to meet an expected attack, Taliaferro
received orders from Garnett
to march rapidly and overtake the main body.
A few minutes later he was informed, by the officer in charge of his 10 riflemen, that the brave Garnett
had been killed by a Federal sharpshooter, firing across the river, just as he was ordering the skirmishers to retire.
One of Lanier
's guns was disabled in this engagement and abandoned after being spiked.
Closely followed by the enemy, Taliaferro
fell back 4 miles further to Parsons' ford, the last one of Cheat river
to be crossed; a half mile beyond this he overtook the main body, halted there by Garnett
's order and drawn up to receive the enemy.
After waiting for some time, and no enemy appearing, the retreat was resumed,