squadron of cavalry, and two pieces of artillery in the forenoon, and this force was increased toward the afternoon.
During the following night and forenoon two squadrons of the command were on picket above and below the Forge Bridge.
Tuesday, July 1, early in the morning an ineffectual attempt was made at the ford above the Forge Bridge to drive my pickets from their post. Private Robertson, of Company D, Jeff. Davis Legion, posted as vedette, encountered 4 privates of New York regiment; killed 1 and compelled the other 3 to surrender with their arms. After his the enemy retired and were not seen again until next day. The command moved with the brigade to the farm of --- Rock, 5 or 6 miles from Haxall's Landing, where it bivouacked.
Monday, July 2, a drenching rain fell during the early morning. A squadron from the command, composed of the Boykin Rangers, Jeff. Davis Legion, Lieutenant Chestnut commanding, and the Black Horse Company, Fourth Virginia Cavalry, under Lieutenant Smith, was posted on picket on a road leading toward Westover. Lieutenant Chestnut, with 10 men in advance, supported by 30 of the reserve, charged upon a squadron the enemy's cavalry, posted in the road, and compelled it to fall back, with a loss of 1 man killed and 1 horse captured. One piece from Stuart's Horse Artillery
(a 12-pounder howitzer), Lieutenant Shaw commanding, had been ordered to report to me. I advanced on the road leading to Haxall's Landing. This road leads at right angles to the river road at an elevated point nearly opposite the landing, which is from this point 1 1/4 miles distant. The space between this river road and the river is an open field, and the road leading to the landing, as well as the whole field, is within easy range of gunboats on the river. One gunboat was discovered at the lading. The advanced guard, 24 men, under Lieutenant Merchant, of Captain Williams' company (Fourth Cavalry), with 6 or 8 men from the Legion, were deployed through the woods to gather prisoners, directing their course toward the landing, with instructions to keep out of sight of the boats as far as possible. Accompanying the advance guard I proceeded to the neighborhood of Haxall's Landing, and learned from him that the Monitor and Galena were in front of the house, about 200 yards distant. Suspecting that I might find some of the enemy lurking about the overseer's house, immediately on the bank of the river, with Private Volney Metcalfe, of Company A, Jeff. Davis Legion, I succeeded in getting to the rear of this house, about 60 yards from the Monitor and Galena, and captured 3 prisoners, with arms, one being a sailor from the Monitor. Our character seeming to be undiscovered by the gunboats, I ordered 5 of my men and as many prisoners into a field near the river bank, to drive away some 25 or 30 mules there feeding, some with harness on. As my men had Yankee overcoats and caps on and were assisted by Yankees, I was permitted to move off with 150 prisoners and guns and the mules to a place of security.
In the mean time the main column had been advanced on the River road toward Shirley within 200 yards of the point at which the road turns abruptly to the left. In the angle thus formed are thick woods, and from them shots were fired at the head of the column. Cavalry pickets had previously been driven in. I found the column slowly retiring. Ordering in Captain Avery's company as sharpshooters dismounted, I again advanced, but halted the column when I found that our sharpshooters were outnumbered. Suspecting that the enemy was in ambush, I ordered the howitzer to the front and in the mean time discovered a regiment of infantry behind a line of bushes beyond the turn of the road on the right upon elevated ground. Masking the