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Virginia (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
nd. Many a cavalryman mortgaged his property to supply himself with horses, and had to pay in greenbacks after the war what was expected of our Government. The Government was very short of transportation; it could not send the men and horses back to their homes when necessary to exchange their jaded ones for fresh horses; neither would it pay the extra expense he incurred to accomplish this object. Take this illustration: A member of a company, whose home was in Washington county, Southwestern Virginia, has his horse wounded near Martinsburg, or Shepherdstown, in Jefferson county. How long a time will it take that man to carry his jade back home and hunt up a fresh horse? To keep that animal in camp to consume the scanty rations doled out to the active horses reported for duty was poor management; but we had no men detailed at camp for that purpose, and yet a cavalryman without a horse during an active campaign was a mere camp dog, and the good soldiers would not stay there. The
United States (United States) (search for this): chapter 78
nd bridles were citizens' make of every conceivable shape, and wholly unsuited for cavalry service. When we laid down our arms we had as complete an outfit for each cavalryman in my brigade as we wanted, all of which had been supplied by the United States Quartermaster Department, through their cavalry, and captured by us—the finest cavalry pistols, sabres, carbines, saddles, halters and bridles, blankets and canteens, oil-cloths and tent-flies—in short, all that we wanted, and our transportation were all branded U. S., together with the mules and harness. Our cavalry battery, caissons, battery forges, &c., all had the U. S. brand until Rosser's great disaster at Tom's Brook 9th October, 1864. Reconnoisance in force 19th August, 1864. Wickham's brigade of Fitz. Lee's division, Anderson's corps, was stationed to the right of Winchester, near Abram's creek. Its pickets extended along the line of the Opequon creek from the crossing of the Berryville pike north, towards Summit P
Martinsburg (West Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
to supply himself with horses, and had to pay in greenbacks after the war what was expected of our Government. The Government was very short of transportation; it could not send the men and horses back to their homes when necessary to exchange their jaded ones for fresh horses; neither would it pay the extra expense he incurred to accomplish this object. Take this illustration: A member of a company, whose home was in Washington county, Southwestern Virginia, has his horse wounded near Martinsburg, or Shepherdstown, in Jefferson county. How long a time will it take that man to carry his jade back home and hunt up a fresh horse? To keep that animal in camp to consume the scanty rations doled out to the active horses reported for duty was poor management; but we had no men detailed at camp for that purpose, and yet a cavalryman without a horse during an active campaign was a mere camp dog, and the good soldiers would not stay there. The only thing to be done was to start him as so
Shepherdstown (West Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
ses, and had to pay in greenbacks after the war what was expected of our Government. The Government was very short of transportation; it could not send the men and horses back to their homes when necessary to exchange their jaded ones for fresh horses; neither would it pay the extra expense he incurred to accomplish this object. Take this illustration: A member of a company, whose home was in Washington county, Southwestern Virginia, has his horse wounded near Martinsburg, or Shepherdstown, in Jefferson county. How long a time will it take that man to carry his jade back home and hunt up a fresh horse? To keep that animal in camp to consume the scanty rations doled out to the active horses reported for duty was poor management; but we had no men detailed at camp for that purpose, and yet a cavalryman without a horse during an active campaign was a mere camp dog, and the good soldiers would not stay there. The only thing to be done was to start him as soon after the horse was unfit
Summit Point (West Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
tation were all branded U. S., together with the mules and harness. Our cavalry battery, caissons, battery forges, &c., all had the U. S. brand until Rosser's great disaster at Tom's Brook 9th October, 1864. Reconnoisance in force 19th August, 1864. Wickham's brigade of Fitz. Lee's division, Anderson's corps, was stationed to the right of Winchester, near Abram's creek. Its pickets extended along the line of the Opequon creek from the crossing of the Berryville pike north, towards Summit Point. In front of us was Merritt's division of the enemy's cavalry, each holding the opposite banks of the Opequon. About midday I received orders from General Wickham to move with the brigade and battery (Brethead's old battery of horse-artillery) down the Berryville pike and find the location of the enemy's army. On reaching the outpost the picket squadron cleared the way by a dash across the creek, which was followed closely by the brigade. The enemy's videttes were pressed back upon th
Tom's Brook (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
brigade. General Fitz Lee having been seriously wounded at the battle of Winchester, 19th September, I had command of Wickham's brigade from that time, except at the battle of Cedar Creek, when I was absent on sick leave. At General Rosser's Tom's Brook cavalry disaster, where we lost nearly everything on wheels, my trunk and desk containing all the data I had collected fell into the hands of the enemy. Wickham did not call for a report while with us in the Valley and I did not make one. oths and tent-flies—in short, all that we wanted, and our transportation were all branded U. S., together with the mules and harness. Our cavalry battery, caissons, battery forges, &c., all had the U. S. brand until Rosser's great disaster at Tom's Brook 9th October, 1864. Reconnoisance in force 19th August, 1864. Wickham's brigade of Fitz. Lee's division, Anderson's corps, was stationed to the right of Winchester, near Abram's creek. Its pickets extended along the line of the Opequon c
Washington county (Rhode Island, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
e of office in Richmond. Many a cavalryman mortgaged his property to supply himself with horses, and had to pay in greenbacks after the war what was expected of our Government. The Government was very short of transportation; it could not send the men and horses back to their homes when necessary to exchange their jaded ones for fresh horses; neither would it pay the extra expense he incurred to accomplish this object. Take this illustration: A member of a company, whose home was in Washington county, Southwestern Virginia, has his horse wounded near Martinsburg, or Shepherdstown, in Jefferson county. How long a time will it take that man to carry his jade back home and hunt up a fresh horse? To keep that animal in camp to consume the scanty rations doled out to the active horses reported for duty was poor management; but we had no men detailed at camp for that purpose, and yet a cavalryman without a horse during an active campaign was a mere camp dog, and the good soldiers would
Halltown (West Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
risoners. From our own loss, it is manifest that theirs was considerable. Arriving at the Opequon after dark I reported to General Wickham orally what had been done, and moved back to camp. The next day Sheridan fell back and fortified near Halltown. Nine hundred and fifty men and a battery had driven their best division of cavalry back upon their infantry, and we had bearded the lion in his den and returned to camp without being pressed. On page 135, Pond's book, we take the following. Sheridan to Halleck, official, August 23d: My position at best was a bad one, and as there is much dependent upon this army, I fell back and took a new position at Halltown. Same date, August 23d, from same to General Auger: I do not believe Pickett sand Field's divisions are here, but the rebels have been very bold. This latter dispatch makes an old soldier feel If we did so, tis greater glory for us That you remember it, than for ourselves Vainly to report it. But listen to what
Meadow Mills (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 78
ere in poor condition. The country was admirably suited to the operations of large bodies of cavalry, and one of their greatest advantages consisted in their ability to subsist largely upon the country through which they operated, (which was done without stint and without pay). Early's presence had kept them ensconced behind fortified lines, and he had checkmated their movements until General Anderson's withdrawal to General R. E. Lee's army; after which ensued the battles of Winchester, Cedar Creek, Fisher's Hill and Waynesboroa, in every one of which engagements a soldier of dash should have gobbled Early's entire command and sent him to Washington, and moved with the remainder of his command across the mountains and joined Grant. Sheridan's dispatches to Grant and Halleck up to the battle of Winchester indicate a caution amounting to timidity. What was accomplished at the end of a six months campaign should have been done effectually at Winchester. History will yet vindicate
Opequan Creek (United States) (search for this): chapter 78
alltown. Same date, August 23d, from same to General Auger: I do not believe Pickett sand Field's divisions are here, but the rebels have been very bold. This latter dispatch makes an old soldier feel If we did so, tis greater glory for us That you remember it, than for ourselves Vainly to report it. But listen to what he has to say a little further on. September 12th, Pond's book, he writes to General Grant. It is exceedingly difficult to attack him (Early) in his position. Opequon creek is a very formidable barrier; there are various crossings, but all are difficult; the fords are formidable. I have thought it best to remain on the defensive until he (Early) detaches, unless the chances are in my favor. The troops here are in fine spirits; some of them not very reliable. On 15th (same to same): There are yet no indications of Early's detaching. It seems impossible to get at their cavalry; it is in poor condition. Is not this the most remarkable condition of things
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