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[553] of its cavalry, and the Second corps reached Paris on the 4th of November. Stuart's division, which on that day was commanded by General Rosser, endeavored for a moment to make a stand against it, but was soon dislodged; and while the Federals occupied Ashby's Gap, the Confederate cavalry retired by the eastern slope of the Blue Ridge to cover Longstreet along the line of Hedgeman's River, and they did not halt during this rapid retreat until they had reached the village of Orleans. Jackson, meanwhile, still continued inactive at Millwood, allowing the Federals to occupy Ashby's Gap, and seeming to take no notice of their columns, that were advancing along the road through which he communicated with the rest of the army. The passage of this road at Chester Gap was guarded by D. H. Hill's division, which was to join Longstreet whenever it should find itself too seriously compromised by remaining in the defile. In order to protect its approaches as long as possible, Stuart, who had rejoined his division alone and after passing through many dangers, brought it to the front on the morning of the 5th and took position at the junction called Barbee's Cross-roads, where he waited for the enemy on carefully chosen and prepared ground. Pleasanton was not slow in bringing up his brigade, and immediately attacked him, notwithstanding the disproportion of numbers. The Eighth Illinois, led by Colonel Farnsworth, a distinguished officer, whose career was to be soon cut short by a glorious death,1 gallantly charged on the left on the Warrenton road, but was stopped by a barricade which had been raised across it. On the Chester Gap road to the right the Federals steadily waited for their adversaries, whom they received with a well-sustained fire, which threw their ranks into confusion. At the same time, Colonel Davis, ordering the Eighth New York to draw their sabres, threw himself upon their flank, and after a hand-to-hand fight of a few minutes' duration drove them back in disorder. Stuart, unwilling to continue the fight, retired toward Flint Hill; Pleasanton followed him as far as Sandy Hook, thus occupying

1 John F. Farnsworth, of the Eighth Illinois, is still living, and was lately a member of Congress. He was promoted to brigadier-general November 29, 1862. The author has confounded him with Brigadier-General E. J. Farnsworth, of Michigan, killed at Gettysburg.—Ed.

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