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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 12, Part 2 (Second Manassas)
Page 564 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

position at Rappahannock Station and to drive the enemy from his positions on both sides of the river. The batteries were opened at sunrise on the 23rd and a severe cannonade continued for several hours. In about two hours, however, the enemy was driven across the river, abandoning his tete-de-point. The brigades of Brigadier Gens. N. G. Evans and D. R. Jones-the latter under Colonel George T. Anderson-moved forward to occupy this position. It was found untenable, however, being exposed to a cross-fire of artillery from the other bank. The troops were therefore partially withdrawn, and Colonel S. D. Lee was ordered to select positions for his batteries and joined in the combat. The enemy's position was soon rendered too warm for him, and he took advantage of a severe rain-storm to retreat in haste, after firing the bridge and the private dwellings in its vicinity. Colonel Walton deserves much credit for skill in the management of his batteries, and Colonel Lee got into position in time for some good practice.

The next day (August 24) the command, continuing to march up the Rappahannock, crossed Hazel River and bivouacked at Jeffersonton.

On the 25th we relieved a portion of General Jackson's command at Waterloo Bridge. There was more or less skirmishing at this point until the afternoon of the 26th, when the march was resumed, crossing the Rappahannock at Hinson's Mill Ford, 6 miles above Waterloo.

A dash of several squadrons of Federal cavalry into Salem, in front of us, on the 27th, delayed our march about an hour. Not having cavalry, I was unable to ascertain the meaning of this movement; hence the delay. This cavalry retired and the march was resumed, resting for the night at White Plains. The head of my column reached Thoroughfare Gap about 3 p.m. on the 28th. A small party of infantry was sent into the mountain to reconnoiter. Passing through the Gap, Colonel [Benjamin] Beck, of the Ninth Georgia Regiment, met the enemy, but was obliged to retire before a greatly superior force. The enemy held a strong position on the opposite gorge and succeeded in getting his sharpshooters in position on the mountain. Brigadier General D. R. Jones advanced two of his brigades rapidly and soon drove the enemy from his position on the mountain. Brigadier-General Wilcox, with his own and Brigadier-Generals Featherston's and Pryor's brigades, was ordered through Hopewell Gap, 3 miles to our left, to turn the right and attack the enemy in rear. The enemy made his attack upon Jones, however, before these troops could get into their positions, and after being repulsed with severe loss commenced his retreat just before night. In this affair the conduct of the First Georgia Regulars, under Major [John D.] Walker, was dashing and gallant.

Early on the 29th the columns were united and the advance to join General Jackson was resumed. The noise of battle was heard before we reached Gainesville. The march was quickened to the extent of our capacity. The excitement of battle seemed to give new life and strength to our jaded men, and the head of my column soon reached a position in rear of the enemy's left flank and within easy cannot-shot. On approaching the field some of Brigadier-General Hood's batteries were ordered into position, and his division was deployed on the right and left of the turnpike at right angles with it, and supported by Brigadier-General Evans' brigade. Before these batteries could open the enemy discovered our movements and withdrew his left. Another battery (Captain Stribling's) was placed upon a commanding position to my right, which played upon the rear of the enemy's left and drove him entirely from


Page 564 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 12, Part 2 (Second Manassas)
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