War of the Rebellion: Serial 002 Page 0232 OPERATIONS IN MD., PA., VA., AND W. VA. Chapter IX.

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am indebted for the promptness with they appeared at the points intended to be occupied.

All of which is respectfully submitted.

THOMAS MORTON,

Colonel, Commanding Twentieth Regiment O. V. M.

Brigadier General C. W. HILL,

Commanding First Brigade, First Division, U. S. Troops.

HEADQUARTERS TWENTIETH REGIMENT O. V. M.,

Grafton, Va., July 21, 1861.

SIR: On Monday, July 15, I received your order to proceed with Companies A, Captain Nichols; B, Captain Dodds; E, Captain Mott; F, Lieutenant Taylor; I, Captain Cable; K, Lieutenant Adams, quartermaster (detailed to this special duty), of the Twentieth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Militia, and Companies - - of the Twenty second Regiment Ohio Volunteer Militia, under Lieutenant-Colonel Turley; one detachment of a company of the Virginia First, Captain Britt; one company of the Virginia Second, Captain Ewing, and two pieces of artillery, under the command of Captain Daum, numbering in all about 900 men, to New Creek, on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and thence strike the Northwestern Virginia turnpike for the purpose of cutting off the retreat of the rebel forces passing over that road from Laurel Hill. The advanced guard, with the artillery, left Oakland at 4 o'clock p. m., under command of Major Lamison, but on account of the want of telegraphic communication was delayed by the conductor of the train until 8 o'clock p. m. within one mile of Oakland.

At 2 o'clock a. m., July 16, I arrived at New Creek, and at 3 a. m. put my command in motion, and for the want of means of transportation, and that my movements might not be delayed, I took no baggage, except one-third of the cooking utensils and one day's rations. We breakfasted after a march of six miles, and proceeded to Ridgeville, having learned that the enemy were in force at that place. Finding no force at that point, I proceeded, over a most rugged and difficult road, almost impassable for the artillery, to Martin's Gap, after a march of fifteen hours, making thirty-three miles, at which place your courier reached us, ordering us to join you at Greenland, two and a half miles distant, at which place we arrived at 11 o'clock a. m. on Wednesday, July 17.

Joining your forces at Martrin's Gap, I learned that the advance of the enemy, about 1,000, had encamped at that place on Sunday, July 14, about 10 o'clock a. m., and that, learning of the approach of our forces, had hastily retreated on Saturday, at 6 o'clock p. m., for Petersburg. In their retreat they destroyed the bridge over Patterson's Creek, making the road impassable for wagons, and was therefore compelled to send artillery around over the Northwestern turnpike, a distance of seven miles farther than pursued by my command. Being without a baggage train and ambulance, with short rations, the march was a most trying one, and to the endurance of men and officers and their cheerfulness and hearty co-operation I am indebted for the celerity of my movements, and for which all deserve much praise.

All of which is respectfully submitted.

THOMAS MORTON,

Colonel, Commanding Twentieth Regiment O. V. M.

C. W. HILL,

Brigadier-General, Commanding U. S. Troops in Western Va.