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[85] of cavalry had also been sent from Lee's army, and reported to Early on the 5th of October; troops were ordered from Breckenridge, at this time in South-West Virginia; while all the reserves in the Valley were embodied and placed under Early's command. Altogether these reinforcements amounted to more than ten thousand men,1 and Early, now finding himself stronger than he had been at Winchester, determined to attack the national forces in position at Harrisonburg.

But on the 6th of October, Sheridan began his retrograde movement, stretching the cavalry across the Valley from the Blue Ridge to the eastern

1 ‘The arrival of Kershaw will add greatly to your strength. . . All the reserves in the Valley have been ordered to you. Breckenridge will join you, or co-operate, as circumstances will permit, with all his force. Rosser left this morning for Burksville . . where he will shape his force as you direct.’—Lee to Early, Sept. 27. Early also admits the arrival of Fitz-Lee and Lomax's cavalry. He states in his Memoir that Rosser's brigade did not exceed 600 mounted men for duty, and that Kershaw's division numbered 2,700; he gives no estimate of Fitz-Lee or Lomax's strength, and says not a word of Breckenridge or the reserves; but declares that ‘these reinforcements about made up my losses at Winchester and Fisher's Hill.’

The returns, however, tell a different tale. The latest from these commands, prior to Sept. 27, were as follows:—

July 10Fitz-Lee1,706 effective.
Aug. 31Kershaw3,445 effective.
Sept. 10Lomax3,568 effective.

Breckenridge succeeded late in September to the command in South-West Virginia, and on the 13th of that month, Echols, his predecessor, reported 3,904 effective men. I can find no return of Rosser's force, nor of the reserves; but Grant telegraphed to Halleck, Sept. 30: ‘Rosser's brigade of cavalry has gone to Early. The brigade numbered 1,400 men.’

It has already been shown that the rebels never include the reserves in any statement of their strength, although these were always put into battle, and fought as well as any. Early speaks, page 97 of his Memoir, of two companies of reserves, coming from different points, one with two pieces of artillery, and covering Rockfish Gap against Sheridan's cavalry; it is difficult to see why such troops should not be included in an estimate of his force.

In the same way, in computing Lee's numbers, the rebels and their friends never reckon the troops, 5,000 to 7,000, in the city of Richmond, nor the local reserves, who were put into the trenches in every battle. Yet from these two sources alone Lee had always an addition to his fighting force of 10,000 soldiers. The endeavors of the rebels since the war to belittle the strength of their armies are as ingenious as their strategy was in the field, but hardly so creditable.

On the 6th of October, an order was published by the rebel government, revoking all details from the army of persons between the ages of sixteen and forty-five. ‘If this be rigidly enforced, it will add many thousands to the army. It is said there are 8,000 details in the military bureaux of this state.’—Rebel War Clerk's Diary. ‘From General Early's army we learn that the detailed men and reserves are joining in great numbers, and the general asks 1,000 muskets.’—October 19.—Ibid., Vol. II., p. 310.

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