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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 27, Part 2 (Gettysburg Campaign)
Page 324 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

horses were sent back for them, but the rear of the column had passed before their arrival. The army proceeded to the vicinity of Bunker Hill and Darkesville, where it halted to afford the troops repose. The enemy made no effort to follow excepting with his cavalry, which crossed the Potomac at Harper's Ferry, and advanced toward Martinsburg on July 16. They were attacked by General Fitz. Lee, with is own and Chambliss' brigades, and driven back with loss. When the army returned to Virginia, it was intended to move into Loudoun, but the Shenendoah was found to be impassable. While waiting for it to subside, the enemy crossed the Potomac east of the Blue Ridge, and seized the passes we designed to use. As he continued to advance along the eastern slope, apparently with the purpose of cutting us off from the railroad to Richmond, General Longstreet was ordered, on July 19 to precede to Culpeper Court-House, by way of Front Royal. He succeeded in passing part of his command over the Shenendoah in time to prevent the occupation of Manassas and Cherpster Gaps by the enemy, whose cavalry had already made its appearance. As soon as a pontoon bridge could be laid down, the rest of his corps crossed the river, and marched trough Chester Gap to Culpeper Court-House, where it arrived on the 24th. He was followed without serious opposition by General A. P. Hill. General Ewell having been detained in the Valley by an effort to capture a force of the enemy guarding the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad west of Martinsburg, Wright's brigade was left to hold Manassas Gap until his arrival. He reached Front Royal on the 23d, with Johnson's and Rodes' divisions, Early's being near Winchester, and found General Wright skirmishing with the enemy's infantry, which had already appeared in Manassas Gap. General Ewell supported Wright with Rodes' division and some artillery, and the enemy was held in check. Finding that the Federal force greatly exceeded his own, General Ewell marched trough Thorton's Gap, and ordered Early to move up the Valley by Strasburg and New Market. He encamped near Madison Coft-House on July 29. The enemy mashed his army in the vicinity of Warrenton, and, on the night of July 31, his cavalry, with a large supporting force of infantry, crossed the Rappahannock at Rappahannock Station and Kelly's Ford. The next day they advanced toward Brandy Station, their progress being gallantly resisted by General Stuart with Hampton's brigade, commanded by Colonel[L. S.]Baker, who fell back gradually to our lines, about 2 miles south of Brandy. Our infantry skirmishers advanced, and drove the enemy beyond Brandy Station. It was now determined to place to army in a position to enable it more readily to oppose the enemy should the attempt to move southward, that near Culpeper Court-House being one that he could easily avoid. Longstreet and Hill were put in motion August 3, leaving the cavalry at Culpeper. Ewell had been previously ordered from Madison, and by the 4th, the army occupied the line of the Rapidan. The highest praise is due to both officers and men for their conduct during the champaign. The privations and hardship of the march and camp were cheerfully encountered, and borne with a fortitude


Page 324 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 27, Part 2 (Gettysburg Campaign)
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