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[558]

Meade now reported to Grant his position in the line of march. ‘Wright,’ he said, ‘reached this point by seven A. M., without having received his rations. I have directed three days rations to be opened to him from the Fifth corps train, which is here. Wright will move on as soon as his rations are issued.’ Exertions such as these deserved and insured success. Meade continued: ‘Sheridan moving the cavalry would indicate the situation of affairs at Jetersville changed. I have sent forward to inquire, and if it is not necessary to go to Jetersville, I will move on the most direct road to Farmville.’ This would intercept the rebel army again, if Lee marched westward from Amelia, and Grant replied: ‘Your dispatch of 8.30 A. M. received. Your movements are right. Lee's army is the objective point, and to capture that is all we want. Ord has marched fifteen miles to-day to reach here, and is going on. He will probably reach Burksville to-night. My Headquarters will be with the advance.’

The troops were now in superb condition and spirits, and marched with cheerful alacrity, though often without rations; but the hope of coming up with the enemy, they said themselves, was better than supplies. There was absolutely no straggling. As the infantry passed the spot where Grant and his staff were seated by the roadside, not knowing who composed the group of dismounted horsemen, more than once the soldiers cried: ‘Cavalry 'gin out ridina. Cavalry 'gin out ridina.’ And in reality the infantry marched as well and as far in this campaign as the horse.

Everything had been quiet at Jetersville during the night, and the troops that had reached there slept

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