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r Winchester, but the Federals did not push on. General Grant expected that Early would be recalled to Richmond, and he had therefore ordered that the corps (Sixth and Nineteenth) he had sent up, should, if possible, anticipate him. They were now withdrawn, and Hunter's forces, under Crook, were left to hold the Valley. Early quickly discovered this, and promptly advancing from Strasburg, on July 24th, fell upon Crook, on the battlefield of Kernstown, where Shields had repulsed Jackson in 1862. Early's victory was thorough, Crook's forces being routed with heavy loss, and in two days Early once more held the Potomac. Mr. Pond does not give Crook's strength in this fight, but as the returns for August show some 22,000 men in the Department of West Virginia, it is certain that Crook outnumbered Early, who, according to Mr. Pond, had in all about 15,000 under his command. This victory caused an immediate change in the Federal programme. The troops that had been recalled to Richm
August 21st (search for this): chapter 42
th his small army, followed close at his heels. Sheridan availed himself, however, of the opportunity to plunder and ravage the country. He says, I destroyed all the wheat, hay and provisions south of Winchester and Berryville, and drove off all the cattle. The Federal rear-guard, under Torbert, was overhauled at Winchester and severely handled, when Sheridan fell back behind the Opequan, and subsequently withdrew towards Charlestown. Here Early and Anderson made an attack upon him on August 21. After a sharp encounter Early drove his advance, and again Sheridan fell back, this time to Halltown. At last he had reached a position he deemed himself strong enough to hold against Early's 21,000 men. Early finding it impossible to get at the Federal army in its last position, moved on the 25th towards the Potomac, and ran against and severely defeated Sheridan's cavalry. Once more it seemed as if the North was to be invaded. Sheridan telegraphed that Early had marched with the int
ere at an end for the season, the mass of Early's troops were withdrawn by General Lee to Petersburg. About the same time General Grant withdrew a large part of Sheridan's infantry to the same place. Early removed his headquarters to Staunton, and kept his cavalry busy during the winter in making dashes at exposed posts and at the Baltimore and Ohio railroad. He also checked effectually the cavalry expeditions sent out by Sheridan. Matters were now rapidly hastening to an end. Late in February Sheridan set out from Winchester with 10,000 sabres, and moved up the Valley. Early attempted, with the 1,200 or 1,300 men he had, to stop him at Rockfish Gap. The Federals attacked the Confederates, however, at Waynesboroa before they had fallen back into the gap, and quickly routed, rode down and captured the greater part of this handful of troops. Sheridan's command in the Valley was marked by excessive barbarity. Not only was Grant's order for the wholesale destruction of private
The Shenandoah Valley in 1864, by George E. Pond—Campaigns of the civil war, XI. A Review, by Colonel Wm. Allan. This is one of the most interesting of the Scribner series and is valuable because of the clearness with which it is written, and of the amount of research it shows in bringing together information from widely scatbers of the series. Mr. Rope's Army under Pope, and General Palfrey's Antietam, for instance. It is mainly a narrative of the Federal operations in the Valley in 1864, only describing and discussing the Confederate side, so far as is necessary to the comprehension of the achievements of the Union armies. While, too, Mr. Pond's he Shenandoah, though he is prompt to condemn the burning of Chambersburg, which was the outgrowth of some of these cruelties. At the opening of the campaign of 1864, General Sigel commanded the Federal department of West Virginia. He had over 27,000 men present for duty under his command. These were scattered over his depart
October 19th (search for this): chapter 42
ry was badly beaten on October 9th, Early continued to advance to Fisher's Hill, while Sheridan halted at Cedar Creek, and prepared to send some of his troops to Grant. Early now planned and executed one of the most daring exploits of the war. With a force of about 12,000 men he determined to attack the immensely superior and victorious forces of the enemy, relying on the very boldness and unexpectedness of the movement for success. Early properly disposed his troops, and at daybreak on October 19th Sheridan's camp was attacked. The Federals were taken completely by surprise, and in a short time two of Sheridan's corps were overwhelmed and dispersed, and their camps and artillery captured, and the third one was forced from the field. The force of Early's attack had now spent itself, his cavalry had not been able to drive the masses of Federal cavalry on the flanks, the country in front was open, and the Confederates halted for some hours. Meantime the Federals recovered from their
Castle with the same headlong speed, not through fear of the enemy, but through necessity of reaching supplies. During the week that elapsed before these were obtained, the troops had no hard bread, and only one issue of six ounces of flour per man. But there was beef on the hoof, the cattle being driven by day and eaten the same night. Many horses and mules died for want of fodder and rest, and not a few wagons were burned for lack of animals to draw them. Hunter reached Gauley Bridge, June 27, with his army in a state of demoralization and exhaustion. Early reached Salem on the 22d. He had moved 209 miles in nine days, had saved Lynchburg and driven Hunter headlong back to the Valley, and then across it and into the Alleghany mountains. His instructions were to destroy Hunter if possible, and to threaten Maryland and Washington city by an advance northward, if the way should be open. Hunter was now out of reach, and his flight left the road to the Potomac open. Early, de
g back to the Valley, and then across it and into the Alleghany mountains. His instructions were to destroy Hunter if possible, and to threaten Maryland and Washington city by an advance northward, if the way should be open. Hunter was now out of reach, and his flight left the road to the Potomac open. Early, determined to seize the opportunity and try to relieve the pressure on Lee by a rapid advance to the Potomac and demonstrations against Washington and Baltimore. Leaving Salem on June 24, Early marched rapidly to the Potomac, a distance of 212 miles, by July 4th, driving Sigel's forces from Martinsburg and other points, to take refuge on the Maryland Heights. Mr. Pond praises Sigel for remaining there with 6,000 or 8,000 men when he should have joined Wallace's troops advancing from Baltimore. Early finding he could not get at Siegel, marched round him, and on July 9th, entered Frederick; on the same day he attacked Wallace, who, with some garrison troops and Rickett's div
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