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[87] that the infantry would halt until after the defeat of the enemy. At an early hour on the 9th, the heads of the opposing columns came in contact, and after a short but severe engagement, the rebels were completely routed, losing eleven guns, together with caissons, battery forges, Headquarters' wagons, and everything else that was carried on wheels. Three hundred and thirty prisoners were captured. Sheridan's casualties did not exceed sixty. He reported the battle in his usual vigorous style: ‘The enemy, after being charged by our gallant cavalry, were broken, and ran; they were followed by our men on the jump twenty-six miles, through Mount Jackson, and across the North Fork of the Shenandoah. I deemed it best to make this delay of one day here to settle this new cavalry general.’ The eleven pieces of artillery taken this day made thirty-six cannon captured in the Valley since the 19th of September. Some of it was new and had never been used before. It had evidently just arrived from Richmond, as the rebels said, ‘for General Sheridan, care of General Early.’

The unlucky commander reported his new defeat in an agony of shame. ‘God knows I have done all in my power to avert the disasters which have befallen this command, but the fact is that the enemy's cavalry is so much superior to ours both in numbers and equipment, and the country is so favorable to the operations of cavalry, that it is impossible for ours to compete with his.’ Lomax's ‘command is and has been demoralized all the time. It would be better if they could all be put into the infantry, but if that were tried, I am afraid they would all run off. . . Sheridan has laid waste nearly ’

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