Facts about the incident.
An authentic statement of this incident is obtainable here.
In July, 1864, two brigades of Confederate cavalry, commanded by Generals McCausland
and Bradley T. Johnson
, the former the senior Brigadier-General
commanding, reached Chambersburg, Pa.
The Twenty-first Virginia Cavalry, commanded by Colonel William E. Peters
, was in the advance when Chambersburg
He was ordered to occupy the city with his regiment, which was done.
He received a verbal order from General McCausland
to distribute his men and to burn the town, and was informed that combustible material would be found in the courthouse.
then rode off before a reply was given him. A short time after receiving the order from General McCausland
, Colonel Peters
sought an interview with General Johnson
and inquired of the latter if he had correctly understood General McCausland
, that he, Colonel Peters
, with his men, was expected to burn the city.