ry, and almost simultaneously our batteries on the Lower Potomac became wonderfully silent.
The Federals claimed a great.
success over them; but the truth was all guns were quietly removed and the batteries abandoned long before the gunboats gave their final shellings.
A great move was evidently preparing by both parties, but few could guess its object.
Banks and others at Harper's Ferry were in great force, and were beginning to move up the Shenandoah slowly and cautiously.
General ( Stonewall ) Jackson had been detached from Manassas before Christmas, with about three thousand men, which, together with those already in the valley, might make a total of ten thousand, but certainly not more.
He was ably seconded by Generals Ewell and Ashby, and no three men in the Confederacy knew the country better.
Although their force was small, and that of the enemy large, they unexpectedly appeared and disappeared like phantoms before Banks and Shields, acting like Jack-o‘--lanterns to dra