eHistory logo Primary Sources Section
Primary Sources Home | Search eHistory

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

You are currently in Volume XXXVI | Pages range from 1 to 1121

Go to Page (current volume):  
Index | Previous | Next
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 36, Part 1 (Wilderness-Cold Harbor)
Page 777 Chapter XLVIII. RAPIDAN TO THE JAMES.

should be able to obtain forage for my animals. On the evening of the 9th I reached the North Anna without serious opposition from the enemy. During that night I destroyed the depot at Beaver Dam, 3 large trains of cars, and 100 cars, 2 fine locomotives, 200,000 pounds of bacon and other stores, amounting in all to 1,500,000 of rebel rations; and also the telegraph wire and railroad track for a distance of about 10 miles, embracing several culverts; recaptured 378 of our men, including 2 colonels, 1 major, and several other officers. On the morning of the 10th I resumed the march, crossing the South Anna at Ground Squirrel Bridge, and went into camp about daylight on the 11th. I captured Ashland Station. At this point I destroyed 1 locomotive and a train of cars, engine-house, 2 or 3 Government buildings, containing large amounts of stores; also destroyed 6 miles of railroad, embracing 6 culverts, 2 trestle brigades, and the telegraph wire for some distance. About 7 a. m. on the 11th I resumed the march on Richmond. All the in ormation that could be obtained led me to believe that the rebel General Stuart was concentrating his cavalry at Yellow Tavern. On reaching that point I found such to be the case. I immediately attacked him, and after an obstinate contest I gained possession of the brook turnpike, captured two pieces of artillery, driving his force back toward Ashland and across the north fork of the Chickahominy, a distance of about 4 miles. At the same time a party charged down the Brook road, across the Chickahominy, and captured the first line of the enemy's works around Richmond. During the night I marched via Brook road, and massed the whole of my command between the first and second lines of the enemy's works on the bluffs overlooking the line of the Virginia Central Railroad and the Mechanicsville pike, my intention being to obtain the enemy's works commanding the Mechanicsville pike, then to pass down the south side of the Chickahominy to the old Fair Oaks battle-ground, and there go into camp. After demonstrating upon the works I found them very strong, and gave up the intention of assaulting. I then determined to recross the Chickahominy at Meadow Bridge, which had been partially destroyed by the enemy. In the course of about three hours the bridge was repaired, under a heavy artillery fire from a battery belonging to the rebel cavalry. This cavalry and artillery were posted across the north end of Meadow Bridge to oppose my recrossing. I directed General Merritt, commanding First Division, to make the crossing, attack the enemy, and drive him off. This was handsomely done, the pursuit continuing as far as Gaines' Mill. During this same time the enemy, observing that I was recrossing the Chickahominy, marched out from his second line of works a brigade of infantry and a large number of dismounted cavalry, and attacked the divisions of Generals Gregg and Wilson. After a severe contest he was repulsed and driven behind his works. These divisions (Gregg's and Wilson's), after collecting the wounded, recrossed the Chickahominy without being followed up. On the afternoon of the 12th the corps encamped at Walnut Grove and Gaines' Mill. At 9 a. m. of the 13th (to-day) resumed the march, and encamped at Bottom's Bridge. I will here cross the Chickahominy, and comply, if possible, with the last condition of my orders. My command is in fine spirits with its success. I have been enabled to bring along with me all of the wounded, excepting about 30 cases of mortal wounds. These were, however, well cared for, and made as comfortable as possible in the farm-houses in the


Page 777 Chapter XLVIII. RAPIDAN TO THE JAMES.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 36, Part 1 (Wilderness-Cold Harbor)
Index | Previous | Next
This symbol external link icon indicates an external link
All images and content are the property of eHistory at The Ohio State University unless otherwise stated.
Copyright © 2014 OSU Department of History. All rights reserved. [citation and copyright information]
eHistory icon