of the infantry, however, was still impracticable until Crawford
's division arrived.
were, therefore, directed to remain in the neighborhood of the Boisseau house
, refresh their men, and be ready to move forward when required.
In this emergency, Sheridan
devised a new and brilliant scheme.
He determined to drive the rebels back to Five Forks
's column, press them into their works, and make a feint of turning their right flank, and then, while their attention was completely engaged by the cavalry, to quietly move the whole Fifth corps against Pickett
's left, and crush the entire rebel command.
It was his old manoeuvre, which had been so successful in the Valley
; a feint upon the enemy's front and right, and suddenly a turning movement to overwhelm the left.
But in this instance it was more felicitous in its application than ever before; for the success of the Fifth corps would drive westward
the rebels who might escape, and isolate them from Lee
. It would thus not only secure victory for Sheridan
, but, by breaking the right wing of Lee
's command, defeat the last manoeuvre of the rebel general, and open a way for Grant
to destroy the entire army of Northern Virginia.
accordingly was directed to press the enemy, and promptly pushed Custer
out by the Scott
or western road, and Devin
by the main one, to Five Forks
Twice he encountered temporary breastworks, erected since the day before; but, dismounting part of his men, he charged impetuously and carried both these lines.
The fields, however, were all quicksand and the woods all jungle, and