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ubscription of supplies and money was promptly made by those present. On the 28th of February the enemy was reported as again marching up the Valley with a large force, rumor saying that it was Hancock with 20,000 men. Its advance reached Mt. Jackson the night of the 27th and approached Harrisonburg late on the 28th. Great excitement prevailed in Staunton, military stores were removed and arrangements made for breaking up camp. Many citizens left for places of greater safety. On the 1st of March, General Early broke camp at Staunton and the last train left for the east at 4:30 p. m., just after Early and his staff left Waynesboro, where the army had been ordered to concentrate. The enemy came on rapidly, driving before it the small force of cavalry that opposed its progress, capturing the wagons and cattle of refugees that were trying to escape along the Valley turnpike, and encamped south of Middle river, some four miles from Staunton, some of its scouts coming into the city du
particularly deep between Staunton and Waynesboro, making it very difficult to move trains and artillery. Wharton strongly picketed the road at Fishersville and spent the night in his old camp. The movement of the enemy was so sudden and unexpected that it was impossible to collect the widely scattered cavalry, and Rosser had but about a score of men to watch the enemy's movements. Early's wagon train encamped beyond South river at Waynesboro, in the entrance to Rockfish gap. On the 2d of March, Wharton's division reached Waynesboro at an early hour, and was put in line of battle, his whole force being only about 800 men, with his left on the northwest front of the town and his right near the Central railway. He was located on a ridge, on the western edge of the town, with four pieces of artillery placed on his right, near the railroad and on the River road, and on the road leading to Staunton. His left rested in the edge of a small body of woods. The day was bitterly cold,
r rear, on the 7th, and came very near recapturing the Confederate prisoners, McNeill having placed his rangers in front of them, at the bridge over the North Fork, thus bringing them between two fires, but they escaped by a ford on a farm road leading west. ward. Rosser made his attack at 10 a. m. This was probably the last noteworthy engagement that took place in the Shenandoah valley, where more than a hundred notable conflicts had been engaged in during the Confederate war. On the 9th of March, General Rosser, who was now the ranking officer remaining in the Valley, having collected quite a body of his cavalry and learning that Sheridan's cavalry had turned from Charlottesville toward Lynchburg, determined to intercept and turn them back. Imboden's brigade, from the South Branch valley, reached Stauntonon the 10th, and on the 11th Rosser marched, at sunrise, with about 500 men, toward Lexington, encamping at Bell's, beyond Midway; marching at sunrise of the 12th, crossing the
March 27th (search for this): chapter 30
ree-Chop road, some 15 miles, to Hadensville, where camp was taken at 11 p. m. Evidence of destruction of property of all kinds lined the roads that Rosser followed. Marching again on the 15th, by way of Thompson's cross-roads, Payne's mill, Salem church, the Louisa road and Goodall's tavern, Ashland was reached and bivouac taken at 11 p. m., the enemy having been driven from that place about dark, by a force from Richmond. On the 16th Rosser moved toward Hanover Court House. On the 27th of March the brigades of Jackson and Imboden, returning to the lower Valley, reached Churchville, eight miles northwest of Staunton, having turned back from following after Sheridan at Hanover Junction. On the 30th, Gen. L. L. Lomax was ordered to take command of the Valley district. On April 3d rumors reached Staunton, first that Richmond had been evacuated, and second that the Federals were again coming up the Valley, and that some 300 had reached Woodstock, but that Col. C. T. O'Ferrall h
invited all soldiers in that region, belonging to the army of Northern Virginia, to come in and be paroled on the same terms as were those that were captured at Appomattox Court House, saying that all that did this would be permitted to remain, undisturbed, at their homes. The proposition of President Lincoln that Virginia should come back to the Union, without conditions, gained circulation on the 18th, and exercised a favorable influence upon the entire community. Late in the month of April, bands of marauders terrorized the people by gathering up what they claimed to have been Confederate government property. In reality they were stealing cattle, sheep and other things, wherever they could find them. A conflict of citizens took place with some of these, three miles from Staunton, on the 20th, on which day word came to the Valley that Lincoln had been assassinated. There was a general expression of indignation and profound regret, at this sad and untimely event. On the 24
, Ashland was reached and bivouac taken at 11 p. m., the enemy having been driven from that place about dark, by a force from Richmond. On the 16th Rosser moved toward Hanover Court House. On the 27th of March the brigades of Jackson and Imboden, returning to the lower Valley, reached Churchville, eight miles northwest of Staunton, having turned back from following after Sheridan at Hanover Junction. On the 30th, Gen. L. L. Lomax was ordered to take command of the Valley district. On April 3d rumors reached Staunton, first that Richmond had been evacuated, and second that the Federals were again coming up the Valley, and that some 300 had reached Woodstock, but that Col. C. T. O'Ferrall had attacked these in their camp at Hawkinstown and routed them. Lomax at once impressed teams to haul his stores to Lexington. On the 4th the enemy advanced to Fisher's Hill and on the 5th to Maurertown, the Confederate cavalry skirmishing with them as they advanced. On the 6th, report having
urertown, the Confederate cavalry skirmishing with them as they advanced. On the 6th, report having arrived that the enemy had again retired down the Valley, Lomax started toward Lexington and marched ten miles. On the 7th, passing through Lexington and by way of the mouth of Buffalo, the march was continued to the Rope Ferry, on James river below Balcony Falls, a distance of 46 miles. Great excitement prevailed among the people, and wild rumors of every kind were flying about. On Saturday, April 8th, Lomax continued his march down the James, by the Amherst road, to Lynchburg, reaching there with his staff about 2 p. m., followed by his command after dark. That city was found greatly excited at the near approach of the enemy from the west, a few hundred as reported, and the citizens had determined to surrender the place. General Lomax soon restored confidence, and collecting convalescents and other soldiers that had straggled in, he took possession of the trenches covering the f
itizens had determined to surrender the place. General Lomax soon restored confidence, and collecting convalescents and other soldiers that had straggled in, he took possession of the trenches covering the front of the city; but soon learning that the force from the west had retired, and hearing rumors that disaster had overtaken General Lee's army at Appomattox Station, he marched toward Farmville, but returned and encamped near Lynchburg, his command having traveled 36 miles. On Sunday, April 9th, General Lomax, accompanied by Engineer Hotchkiss, made an inspection of the defenses of Lynchburg, then went to his camp, three miles down the James, where rumor after rumor came in, saying that General Lee had had a battle on the 8th, losing most of his train and artillery; and that there was further combat on the morning of the 9th, when he had surrendered. These rumors were confirmed, later in the day, although there were some officers present who were of the opinion that Lee had
April 24th (search for this): chapter 30
bands of marauders terrorized the people by gathering up what they claimed to have been Confederate government property. In reality they were stealing cattle, sheep and other things, wherever they could find them. A conflict of citizens took place with some of these, three miles from Staunton, on the 20th, on which day word came to the Valley that Lincoln had been assassinated. There was a general expression of indignation and profound regret, at this sad and untimely event. On the 24th of April the full bench of the justices of the peace of Augusta county, one of the leading ones of Virginia in all respects, met in Staunton, to take steps to prevent the plundering and stealing that was going on throughout the county by these bands of men pretending to gather up public property, and issued an address to all the people, calling on them to abide by the laws; the sheriff was also ordered to go on with the collection of taxes. Many men of the soldier element were still in a state
kers that were coming out of their holes. The cavalry from Grant's army reached Lynchburg on the 13th. The remnants of Jackson's and Lomax's divisions of cavalry, that had retired to the Valley, disbanded at Buchanan, on the 15th, until the 1st of May. On the 17th it was learned that General Hancock, in command of the Federal forces in the lower Valley, had invited all soldiers in that region, belonging to the army of Northern Virginia, to come in and be paroled on the same terms as were thin the afternoon, some 800 Federal soldiers marched into Staunton and went into camp near the city. They were very quiet and disturbed no one. Generals Rosser and William L. Jackson, who were in Staunton, left in the morning of that day. On Monday, May 1st, the Federal provost marshal commenced paroling soldiers of the Confederacy, more offering for parole than could be accommodated. Large numbers of negroes collected at the Federal camp. Rosser and Jackson, with a few followers, left for th
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