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[160] daylight of the 12th, cut the telegraph wire connecting the Federal camps, break the line of communication, and so dispose of his men as to keep back reinforcements from the Elkwater camp; guard against attack from the fort, and aid in the assault of Rust's column, if necessary, on the Cheat mountain stronghold. He was especially charged to so regulate and conceal his movements as not to interfere with the surprise of the enemy by Colonel Rust, with whose left he would seek connection. His route, 20 or more miles in length, was a difficult one, but he was well guided by Dr. Butcher, a loyal practicing physician, who knew that region well. His home was at Huttonsville, and he had retired with the Confederate forces after the battle of Rich Mountain.

General Donelson, with his brigade, was to advance by byways along the eastern side of Tygart's valley and the foot of Cheat mountain, seizing the paths and roads leading to the turnpike from that direction, and driving back any endeavor of the enemy to retard the advance of the center along the turnpike. Such of the artillery as could not be used on the flanks was to follow the turnpike, supported by Munford's battalion and followed by part of Gilham's brigade. The brigade of Colonel Burks was to march across to the Elkwater road and follow that, as the left wing of the advance, guarding that flank, having Lee's cavalry on its flank and rear and ready to make an attack on the enemy's outposts if opportunity should offer. The supply trains were to follow along the main road. On the 9th General Jackson issued orders from Greenbrier river that the brigades of Rust and Fulkerson should draw four days rations of salt meat and hard bread; similar orders were issued by Loring.

After the plan of campaign had been adopted and the date for its inception been fixed, General Lee from ‘Headquarters of the Forces,’ Valley mountain, W. Va., September 9, 1861, issued the following stirring special order:

The forward movement announced to the army of the Northwest in special orders, No. 28. from its headquarters, of this date, gives the general commanding the opportunity of exhorting the troops to keep steadily in view the great principles for which they contend, and to manifest to the world their determination to maintain them. The eyes of the country are upon you. The safety of your homes and the lives of all you hold dear depend upon your courage and exertions. Let each man resolve to be victorious, and that the right of self-government, liberty and peace shall in him find a defender. The progress of this army must be forward.

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Albert Rust (3)
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