previous next

[274] the Rappahannock, under the hand of its chief, and well rested, was preparing to resume the offensive by a bold march.

Jackson had, in fact, put his three divisions in motion at daybreak on the 25th. Abandoning the positions he had occupied since the 22d in front of Sulphur Springs and Waterloo Bridge, he proceeded up the principal branch of the Rappahannock, which, under the name of Hedgeman's River, flows from east to west before reaching the extremity of the Bull Run Mountains. The Federals had not been able to extend their lines sufficiently to observe the upper part of its course. Leaving the village of Amissville behind him, Jackson crossed the river at Hinson's Ford without molestation, and reached the hamlet of Orleans. He was now separated from the Federal army by the Bull Run Mountains. The first opening he found was Thoroughfare Gap, thirty-two kilometres from Orleans. It was upon this point that he directed his course. Speed was an essential condition of success for his daring enterprise; it would have been sufficient for a division detached from Pope's army, or for some of McClellan's troops, who were then being transported by rail, to reach this place in advance of him to bar the passage of this defile. Accordingly, Jackson, protected by the mountain barrier, was hastening his march as much as possible. Leading his soldiers through paths scarcely visible, cutting across fields unmindful of obstacles, forcing his way through woods, barriers and streams, he constantly pushed them forward, encouraging them by his presence and his words. The artillery followed as best it could; the wagons struggled in vain to keep up with the column; no halt was allowed for meals; the soldiers ate, while they marched, a piece of biscuit or a few ears of corn gathered in the fields. The population, astonished at this apparition, followed with wondering eyes, and demonstrations of sympathy, the Confederate soldiers, and especially the illustrious and popular chief, who they felt confident was about to secure a new triumph for their cause. At last Jackson reached Salem about midnight, a village situated at the intersection of the Manassas Railway and the Gainesville and Front Royal road. He found himself at the foot and only within a few kilometres of Thoroughfare Gap. His three divisions were full, having left but a few stragglers behind, notwithstanding

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Stonewall Jackson (4)
Pope (1)
McClellan (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
25th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: