prisoners captured, including a number of officers, were about 300, many of them badly wounded.
Several hundred stand of arms, one fine 12-pound howitzer and 260 horses fell into our hands.
Our loss was 3 men killed and 5 wounded, of whom 2 died the next day. Several wagons were recovered that had been stolen in the raid, loaded with the plunder collected, some of it valuable silver plate; also 200 slaves that had been carried off from the plantations.
This property was carefully guarded and turned over to the proper owners.
The plan of the enemy, as shown by the orders captured, was to march the next day with the 5,000 negro troops and several sections of artillery into Gainesville
, confident of the successful occupation of the town by their large cavalry force.
If such had been their success they would have secured several thousand bales of fine sea island cotton as a rich prize, and untold horrors would have been enacted in desolated homes.
But they failed, for our heroes were fighting for their homes and all that was dear to them in life, and their battle-cry, ‘Victory or Death,’ sent terror into the hearts of the invaders.
This victory saved east
and south Florida
The counties of Bradford
, lying between the St. John's river
and the Gulf of Mexico
, were known by the enemy to be among the most valuable portions of the State
, owing to the almost inexhaustible supplies of sugar, syrup, cattle, with oranges, lemons, limes, arrowroot and other semi-tropical productions, which were of inestimable value to the State
and the Confederacy
Our largest and most productive interest—sea island cotton—and the immense supplies of corn and forage, made it of the highest importance that this wide extent of country should be closely watched and the advances of the enemy checked, preventing widespread desolation and the carrying off of the slaves, who were the only able-bodied tillers of the soil, and better fitted for field work than the white man.