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[512] after reaching Charles City county, passed up on the north side of the Chickahominy, a distance of two miles, to Mr. Thomas Christian's residence; but although much fatigued, he did not draw rein. He had now accomplished much in obtaining information as to the location and strength of the Federal army, and was desirous of reaching the Confederate lines with all possible speed, and did not halt his column for rest until he reached the hospitable mansion of Judge Isaac H. Christian, in the vicinage of Charles City Courthouse. Here he and his staff were received in the most cordial manner and entertained in princely style under some lovely shade trees in the yard. After partaking of some refreshments, Stuart and his staff slept for several hours.

About twilight Stuart, after making all necessary arrangements with Colonel Fitz Lee, with whom he left his command at Buckland, the residence of Colonel J. M. Wilcox, with instructions to follow at 11 o'clock that evening, left with Captain R. E. Frayser, his guide, and a courier for the headquarters of General Lee, near Richmond. The distance from Buckland to Richmond is about thirty miles, and the country through which he had to pass lay in the enemy's lines, and the route he took is known as the James River road. While he was liable to capture by scouting parties, he dashed over the road without the least fear. At Rowland's Mill, about six miles from Charles City Courthouse, Stuart drew rein to quaff a cup of strong coffee, a favorite beverage of his, and to rest fifteen minutes or more; then springing in the saddle, he galloped off in the direction of Richmond.

The writer never saw this dashing officer on an inferior horse, although he had been with him on many a long and weary march. As Stuart approached the neighborhood of White Oak Swamp with his guide and courier, he was in great danger of being captured or shot, for it is but a short distance from White Oak Swamp to the road upon which he was traveling at that time, and this was occupied by General Hooker, with his command, who could have intercepted the bold raider without the slighest difficulty had he known of his approach. At this point he had the James very near him on the south and General Hooker on the north in uncomfortable proximity. But this never delayed Stuart a minute in his important mission. He moved rapidly on, and arrived at General R. E. Lee's headquarters before sunrise the following morning.

Before this he had given orders to Captain Frayser to see Governor John Letcher, for whom he had great esteem and admiration,

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