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[287] had no time or place for rest or reorganization. At Spotsylvania Courthouse it lost nearly a whole division. Its commander, Major-General Edward Johnson, had been wounded and captured. Four of its brigadier-generals had been killed during the campaign, four desperately wounded, and two more had been promoted to major-generals and removed to other commands. The troops, therefore, though hardy and well-tried veterans, were in bad condition for so arduous an undertaking. Despite these facts, so well calculated to throw the command out of joint, it was on the march an hour before that fixed by General Lee in his order! No one but Early knew where they were going, but all felt that if Lee ordered the march it was right and led to victory. When it started, Hunter was within fifty miles of Lynchburg, while Early, on his route by Charlottesville, had to move one hundred and sixty miles, of which a part of his troops had the aid of very poor railway transportation for sixty miles.

On the 16th of June Early had reached Charlottesville, and his corps was at the Rivanna bridge, four miles east of that place, having marched eighty miles in four days, well maintaining the reputation won under Jackson as ‘foot cavalry.’ Here Early received a dispatch from Breckinridge announcing that Hunter was at Liberty (now Bedford City), only distant twenty-five miles. The Orange & Alexandria Railroad had not been sufficiently repaired for transportation in cars. Every effort was made, however, to hurry the repairs and to secure trains to speedily forward the troops from Charlottesville to Lynchburg, for Early, when the perilous position of that city was known was ordered to push on to save it from Hunter's advancing host. He could get only one engine and a few cars at first, but soon added to this limited transportation enough to enable him to move a part of his command. Duffie's attack upon the road between Charlottesville and Lynchburg had not been very serious either to the railroad or the telegraph lines, and both were repaired in one or two days, hence at sunrise on the morning of the 17th, Early commenced to move his corps by rail. The transportation was so limited that he could only get half of his infantry moved on that day. Ramseur's Division, one brigade under Gordon and part of another, were placed upon the train, while Rodes' Division and the residue of Gordon's were ordered to march along the county road, which runs parallel to the railroad, and to meet the train as it returned. The artillery and wagon trains were started over the county road the night before, but got no aid from the railway, and did not reach Lynchburg in time to take any part in the engagement

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