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made a reconnoissance to-day, as far as Occoquan Creek, about twenty-five miles from Washington, D. C., or eighteen miles from Alexandria, Va. They started at four o'clock in the morning and returned late in the evening. The entire force first went to Pohick Church, and there divided — a portion taking the telegraph road to Burk's Station, on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad; the other the road to a point on the Occoquan Creek, about three miles from the Potomac River. The latter crossed Pohick and Accotinck Creeks, and reached Occoquan without meeting with any opposition. Capt. Todd's company of Lincoln Cavalry, which was with the party that went in the direction of Burk's Station, were sent out to make a reconnoissance in advance of the infantry, and when several miles from the other part of the division were suddenly surrounded by a large number of rebels who had been concealed in the woods. Their only hope of escape, therefore, was by cutting their way through, and a skirmish
Comte de Paris, History of the Civil War in America. Vol. 1. (ed. Henry Coppee , LL.D.), Book III:—the first conflict. (search)
s-movement, on Fairfax Court-house the following day; Miles's division was to follow the turnpike as far as Annandale, then to turn to the left into an old road called Braddock Road, because it had been formerly constructed by General Braddock. Hunter followed Miles, Annandale being designated as his first halting-place. Heintzelman, with the strongest division, was directed to proceed by certain cross-roads which, passing south of the line of railway, led to the bank of a stream called Pohick Creek. The soldiers carried three days rations in their haversacks. The supply-trains were to leave Alexandria on the following day, and join the army on the turnpike between Fairfax and Centreville. McDowell's plan was to surprise Bonham's brigade of the enemy stationed at Fairfax by causing it to be attacked on the 17th at the same time by Miles in front and by Hunter in flank. He intended afterwards to make a demonstration by way of Centreville, and lead the bulk of his forces with Hei
agoons, to go with twenty-eight men to the neighborhood of Pohick Church--a part of the country not hither to visited by our pickets — and station pickets at such points as he might think advisable. The Lieutenant proceeded immediately with the specified number of men, (detailed without regard to choice on his part,) from the several companies of the regiment, and on the Braddock's road stationed eight (8) men; at Turner's station, on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, four; and on the Pohick road, eight more. With the remaining eight he himself went forth on to the Pohick Church. Soon after arriving at the Church, fifteen Yankee Dragoons made their appearance from a piece of pines, and immediately our nine men charged on them and put them to flight. It turned out, however, that these flying fifteen were only a small detachment of a large body of cavalry that were but a little distance off; and in a short time, they having joined the main body, the whole of them, amounting to
mmand of General Heinzelman, made a reconnaissance to day as for as Occoquan Creek, about 25 miles from Washington, or 18 miles from Alexandria. They started at four o'clock this morning and returned late this evening. The entire force first went to Pohick Church, and there divided, a portion taking the telegraph road to Surk's Station, on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, the other a road to a point on the Occoquan Creek, about three miles from the Potomac river. The latter crossed Pohick and Accotirick creeks, and reached Occoquan without meeting with any opposition. Captain Todd's company of Lincoln Cavalry, which was with the party that went in the direction of Bark's Station, was sent out to make a reconnaissance in advance of the infantry, and when several miles from the other part of the division they were suddenly surrounded by a large number of rebels who had been concealed in the woods. Their only hope of escape, therefore, was by cutting their way through, and