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[135] not witness them, as, being at the head of the column when we entered the orchard, the command, ‘Left into line’ threw me on the right of the line, and I found matters in my own immediate vicinity so intensely interesting, that I had no time to gaze around to see what was transpiring in other parts of the field.

When we broke their ranks the enemy scattered in every direction, and we scattered in as many directions, also in pursuit. Companies D and I of our regiment, the 6th, came up in time to join in the pursuit. Thus had our small force of about 200 cavalry attacked and routed a vastly superior force of the enemy, numbering about 800, and consisting of cavalry, infantry, and artillery, although that force had formed in battle array to repel our attack. Besides their killed and wounded we captured about 700 prisoners and their artillery and wagon-train. The remainder of our regiment did not get up in time to join in the pursuit. On the following day I heard General Ewell remark to Colonel Flournoy, after expressing his regret at the loss sustained, ‘But you made a glorious charge.’

Among the prisoners was Colonel Kenley, the Federal commander, who was also wounded by a sabre cut, I think, on the head. In the ranks of Co. K, of the 6th Virginia, he had a cousin, a Mr. T. M. C. Paxson. It so happened that on the following day Paxson was among the number detailed to take the prisoners to Winchester. Colonel Kenley, being in the ambulance, recognized Paxson, and called him. After conversing a few minutes he asked Paxson what regiment he belonged to. On being told, the 6th Virginia Cavalry, he replied: ‘Do you know that you men made the greatest cavalry charge yesterday on record?’ and he went on to state that he had formed his men to repel our attack, and they had stood their ground until we were in their midst, yet they had been overcome, and that history nowhere recorded an instance where so small a force of cavalry had charged and overcome so greatly a superior force of infantry, supported by cavalry and artillery. Mr. Paxson is now residing near Peoenia, Va., and will verify the statement just made.

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T. M. C. Paxson (5)
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