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Orders to burn.

Reaching my quarters in the city about 2 o'clock A. M. of the 3d, my adjutant, Linden Kent, a youth about eighteen (who afterwards became a distinguished lawyer in Washington city, and died a few years since), showed me an order from General Ewell, directing all the tobacco warehouses, then full of tobacco, to be burned at a certain signal. He and Captain Herron, of Orange, the ranking officer in my absence (Captain W. T. Early, of Albemarle, and Major James Strange, of Fluvanna, then being absent, sick), had made all the arrangements necessary to carry this order into effect. I directed Captain Herron and Adjutant Kent, so soon as the signal was given, to fire these buildings, then pass over the river on Mayo's bridge and follow the army. Being dead tired, I threw myself down to rest, fell asleep, and did not waken until the arsenal exploded. This woke me up most effectually. I threw my blanket over my shoulder, sword and haversack on one side, and canteen, with a little brandy, on the other. I struck out for Mayo's bridge, some one or two miles distant. The streets were quiet and apparently deserted. When I reached Mayo's bridge the small bridge over the canal connecting the basin with the dock was on fire on one side, a burning canal-boat having drifted up against it.

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