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the result would have been disastrous, no doubt. Hampton's and Robertson's brigades were moved to the front to a position previously chosen, of great strength against a force of ordinary size, or against cavalry alone; but although the enemy's advance was held in check gallantly and decidedly for a long time, it soon became evident that the enemy, utterly foiled for days in his attempt to force our lines, had, as usual, brought a heavy infantry force — part of the Fifth corps, under General Vincent--to his support, and its advance was already engaged in conjunction with the cavalry. I, therefore, directed General Hampton to withdraw to the next height whenever his position was hard pressed, and sent orders at once to Colonel Chambliss and General Jones--the former having informed me that the enemy was advancing in heavy force in his front — to afford all the resistance possible, and General Jones to join his left, and retiring apace with the main body, to effect a junction with i
Charles S. Venable (search for this): chapter 9.72
le surrender, as in the case of General Ewell. General Fitz. Lee's brigade was charged with the duty of investing the place — the remaining brigades following at considerable intervals from Dover. Major-General W. F. Smith was in command of the force in Carlisle. The only obstacle to the enforcement of my threat was the scarcity of artillery ammunition. The whereabouts of our army was still a mystery; but during the night I received a dispatch from General Lee in answer to one sent by Major Venable from Dover, on Early's trail, that the army was at Gettysburg, and had been engaged on this day (1st July) with the enemy's advance. I instantly dispatched to Hampton to move ten miles that night on the road to Gettysburg, and gave orders. to the other brigades with a view to reaching Gettysburg early next day, and started myself that night. My advance reached Gettysburg July 2d, just in time to thwart a move of the enemy's cavalry upon our rear, by way of Hunterstown; after a fierc
A. R. Venable (search for this): chapter 9.72
cer from Prussia, who so early espoused our cause — was disabled in Fauquier, so as to deprive me of his valuable services on the expedition; but it is hoped the command will not long be deprived of his inspiring presence on the field. Major Henry B. McClellan, my Adjutant-General, was constantly at my side, and with his intelligence, ready pen and quick comprehension, greatly facilitated the discharge of my duties. The untiring energy, force of character and devotion to duty of Major A. R. Venable, my Inspector-General, and Lieutenant G. M. Ryals, C. S. A., Provost-Marshal, deserve my special gratitude and praise. The same qualities, united to a thorough knowledge of much of the country, are ascribable to Captain B. S. White, C. S. A., who, though still suffering from a severe wound received at Fleetwood, accompanied the command, and his services proclaim him an officer of merit and distinction. Chief Surgeon Eliason, Captain Blackford, Engineers; Captain Cooke, Ordnance
Leetown (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
To Baker's (late Hampton's) brigade was assigned the duty of picketing the Potomac from Falling Waters to Hedgesville. The other brigades were moved back towards Leetown — Robertson's being sent to the fords of the Shenandoah, where he already had a picket, which, under Captain Johnston, of the North Carolina cavalry, had handsomered by his horse falling. Upon my arrival at the Bower that afternoon (15th), I learned that a large force of the enemy's cavalry was between Shepherdstown and Leetown, and determined at once to attack him, in order to defeat any designs he might have in the direction of Martinsburg. I made disposition accordingly, concentratinor the safety of that flank, and then follow the movement of the army. Fitz. Lee's, W. H. F. Lee's, and Jenkins' brigades, by a forced march from the vicinity of Leetown through Millwood, endeavored to reach Manassas gap, so as to hold it on the flank of the army; but it was already in possession of the enemy, and the Shenandoah,
Rockville, Md. (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
our army in Pennsylvania, and resumed the march northward early on the 28th. General Hampton was sent by Darnestown to Rockville, and the other brigades took the direct route to the same place. General Hampton encountered small parties of the enemy, which, with a number of wagons and teams, he captured, and reached Rockville in advance of the main body. The advance guard of W. H. F. Lee's brigade had a running fight with the Second New York .cavalry, but the speed of their horses deprived us of the usual results in captures. At Rockville, General Hampton encountered what he believed to be a large force of the enemy, and moving up W. H. F. Lee's brigade quickly to his assistance, I found that the enemy had already disappeared, having retreated towards the Great Falls. Rockville was speedily taken possession of. This place is situated on the direct wagon road from Washington City to Hooker's army, and consequently on his route of communication with Washington after crossing th
Winchester, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
agerstown, a little north of the National road. Cavalry pickets were extended beyond the railroad leading to Chambersburg, and everything put in readiness to resist the enemy's attack. The situation of our communications south of the Potomac caused the Commanding-General to desire more cavalry on that side, and accordingly Brigadier-General Jones' brigade (one of whose regiments, Twelfth Virginia cavalry, had been left in Jefferson) was detached and sent to cover our communication with Winchester. The cavalry on the left consisted now of Fitz. Lee's, W. H. F. Lee's, Baker's, and Robertson's brigades — the latter being a mere handful. On the 13th skirmishing continued at intervals; but it appeared that the enemy, instead of attacking, was entrenching himself in our front, and the Commanding-General determined to cross the Potomac. The night of the 13th was chosen for this move, and the arduous and difficult task of bringing up the rear was, as usual, assigned to the cavalry.
Chancellorsville (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
illery serving with it. If, therefore, the peculiar functions of cavalry with the army were not satisfactorily performed in the absence of my command, it should rather be attributed to the fact that Jenkins' brigade was not as efficient as it ought to have been, and as its numbers (3,800) on leaving Virginia warranted us in expecting. Even at that time by its reduction incident to the campaign, it numbered far more than the cavalry which successfully covered Jackson's flank movement at Chancellorsville, turned back Stoneman from the James, and drove 3,500 cavalry under Averill across the Rappahannock. Properly handled, such a command should have done everything requisite, and left nothing to detract, by the remotest implication, from the brilliant exploits of their comrades, achieved under circumstances of great hardship and danger. Arriving at York, I found that General Early had gone, and it is to be regretted that this officer failed to take any measure, by leaving an intelli
Frederick, Md. (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
wn communications, now at my mercy. The entire Sixth army corps, in addition, was sent to intercept me at Westminster, arriving there the morning I left, which, in the result, prevented its participation in the first two days fight at Gettysburg. Our trains in transit were thus not only secured, but it was done in a way that at the same time seriously injured the enemy. General Meade also detached four thousand troops, under General French, to escort public property to Washington from Frederick — a step which certainly would have been unnecessary but for my presence in his rear — thus weakening his army to that extent. In fact, although in his own country, he had to make large detachments to protect his rear and baggage. General Meade also complains that his movements were delayed by the detention of his cavalry in his rear; he might truthfully have added, by the movement in his rear of a large force of Confederate cavalry, capturing his trains and cutting all his communication
arize the conduct of the many officers who deserve special mention, of less rank than Brigadier-General, with-out extending my remarks more than would be proper. To my staff collectively, however, I feel at liberty to express thus officially my grateful appreciation of the zeal, fidelity and ability with which they discharged their several duties and labored to promote the success of the command. Major Heros Von Borcke, Assistant Adjutant and Inspector-General--that gallant officer from Prussia, who so early espoused our cause — was disabled in Fauquier, so as to deprive me of his valuable services on the expedition; but it is hoped the command will not long be deprived of his inspiring presence on the field. Major Henry B. McClellan, my Adjutant-General, was constantly at my side, and with his intelligence, ready pen and quick comprehension, greatly facilitated the discharge of my duties. The untiring energy, force of character and devotion to duty of Major A. R. Venable, m
Williamsport (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 9.72
t the enemy's designs were directed against Williamsport, where, I was informed by General Jones, ou most vigorous attack to save our trains at Williamsport. Our force was very perceptibly much smaller failed me, I hoped to raise the seige of Williamsport, if, as I believed, that was the real objecds Sharpsburg, but afterwards turned to the Williamsport road. Just as the town was cleared, I heart gallantly. The enemy was now very near Williamsport, and this determined and vigorous attack inin just as we reached the ridge overlooking Williamsport. An important auxiliary to this attack wer-General Lee, who reached the vicinity of Williamsport by the Greencastle road very opportunely, ah was ordered to its former position on the Williamsport road. The enemy, observing this from his mtructed at Falling Waters, some miles below Williamsport, where Longstreet's and Hill's corps were t bridge; otherwise, to cross at the ford at Williamsport. The operation was successfully performed [8 more...]
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