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[539] deal worsted in the encounter; and a large portion of his command separated from us and united with General Kilpatrick, and went off with him. Colonel Dahlgren, with about one hundred of his men, who were unable to get to Kilpatrick, continued to retreat through Hanover, King William, and King & Queen counties. I was carried along with this party. We rode the whole of that night as fast as as the men and horses could stand it. A little after sunrise the next morning we stopped awhile and took breakfast, and then rode all day long. When we got to a stream near Aylett's store, I think—that divided the counties of King William and King & Queen—we found a boat sunken, and when we attempted to cross, some Confederates, from the other side of the stream, commenced firing into us, which created considerable consternation among Dahlgren's men. He abused his men, went in front of them and made them return the fire of the Confederates, who were only a small party, and were driven off. We then crossed the stream. But all that evening the Confederates annoyed Dahlgren's command by firing into them from the woods—they killed one Yankee corporal. A little after dark that night, we stopped on the roadside a mile or two from the village of Stevensville; some time after midnight we were called up, and Dahlgren started his command on the march. I was riding in the main line near the front. We had gone perhaps half a mile when I perceived there was some trouble in the front. Dahlgren rode forward; I heard him challenge some one, and heard him snap his pistol, which was at once followed by a fire in return from some one. That shot I suppose killed Dahlgren. And then the Confederates opened fire against the Yankees, and gave a shout and cheer, which cheered my heart to the very bottom, for I felt satisfied there were other men than Home Guards then present, and that the time of my relief had come; the Yankees were greatly alarmed and confused. The road, as I recollect it, was dug from the side of a hill on our left, a bridge in our front had been blockaded, and there was a fence on the right of the road. In the darkness, I got off my horse, opened the fence, and the Yankees retreated into the field. I remained inside of the fence, until I thought the Yankees were gone far enough not to hear me. I then called to our men, who informed me where they were and I went to them; they then informed me that they had killed a man with one leg, and I told them that was Dahlgren; they searched his person, and found the papers that were delivered to the Confederate Government.

The Confederate forces consisted of some disbanded cavalry, who


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