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[104] trestle on this side. At that time I supposed that the force in our rear was not more than 80 men, and that they had probably retired after burning the trestle. Meanwhile Captain Cone and Lieutenant Reddick, in command of separate detachments, had been sent to the rear for the purpose of getting fuller information. They left about 3 p.m. After night it was discovered that two other trestles between the St. Mary's and Baldwin were also on fire, and soon the guard at those points reported that the enemy had fired them. It was then apparent that the force had not retired from our rear, and also that our source of supplies was effectually destroyed, even should we succeed in driving them back. Up to 2 o'clock a. m. on the 26th, I could hear nothing from Captain Cone or Lieutenant Reddick, which led to the belief that they were either captured or cut off by a larger force than at first reported, which latter proved to be true. My force at Baldwin consisted of 216 cavalry under Major Scott, Captain Spencer's company of reserves, about 40 on duty, and Captain Villepigue's battery of four guns. At the hour referred to I called a council of officers and we determined to evacuate Baldwin and move by way of Brandy branch and Lang's ferry, on the Big St. Mary's, to this position on the west side of the south prong of that river.

The whole command moved from Baldwin at 3 o'clock a. m. on the 26th, and crossed Brandy branch at 6 p. m. Here our pickets reported that the enemy's cavalry were in pursuit. The command was immediately put in position to receive them, and soon about 100 cavalry made their appearance, but after five or six shots from Captain Villepigue's battery and a few rounds from our skirmishers they retired. We then crossed the St. Mary's at Lang's ferry, and on Thursday, the 28th, the command arrived and took position at this place. I have since learned that on the night of the 25th three regiments of negroes, one of whites, one of cavalry, and four pieces of artillery reached Darby's still, six miles west of Baldwin.

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