District, the following report of the operations of the Twenty-first Virginia Regiment on the 23rd, 24th, and 25th of May, during the engagements with the enemy near Front Royal and Winchester:
The regiment moved, Colonel Patton commanding, in the position assigned it, with the brigade, from Captain near Luray, early on the morning of May 23, along the road to Front Royal, keeping well closed with the troops in front of it. We did not become engage with the enemy, they having been driven from and beyond Front Royal by the troops in our front. We encamped that night, the 23rd, about 1 mile west of Front Royal.
Left on the morning of the 24th, at 9 o'clock, taking the Winchester road for about 4 miles, when we were ordered to take the Middletown road; moved on this last road quite rapidly, with skirmishing going on to our front, until we reached Middletown, when we were filed to the left, in the direction of Strasburg. We were at this point for a short time exposed to the fire of the enemy's guns, some few shot falling near us, but doing no harm.
We had marched about half mile toward Strasburg when we were evident, from the heavy and continued discharges of artillery, that a general engagement was about to ensue or had commenced. We moved on the road to a point opposite a large stone mill on the left, where we were filed to the left, and marched, under cover of the hill, to near the top of the first hill, as you enter the town, immediately on the left of the road, and ordered to support the Rockbridge Artillery, Captain Poague.
We remained in the above position for about an hour, the men lying down, to protect them from a very heavy fire from the enemy's batteries and from the fire of a party of skirmishers posted behind a done wall 300 yards in front and to our left. While the regiment was in this position I took command of it, Colonel Campbell being wounded and Colonel Patton taking command of the brigade.
The enemy's right having been turned by our troops on the left and the skirmishers driven from the stone wall by the Rockbridge Artillery, they commenced to give way and our troops pursued them, apparently along the whole line. In obedience to orders I moved the regiment immediately in rear of the Rockbridge Artillery until we got on the main road leading into the town from the south, when I was ordered to move forward in pursuit on the Martinsburg road. I moved the regiment rapidly for abut 5 miles, immediately in rear of the First Brigade, Valley District, without overtaking the enemy, when we were ordered to go into camp, with other troops.
I am thankful to be able to report that we lost no men, and though we bore no conspicuous part in the various engagements, I have the satisfaction of knowing that we did our duty and went where we were ordered to go.
I wish to take this opportunity to thank most of the officers and men for the promptness and cheerfulness with which they obeyed orders.
It is my painful duty to report that some were not at their posts.
Owing to the fact that a large number were broken down by the hard duty we had performed, it is impossible to separate those who were really broken down from those who were so lost to all pride and patriot-