War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0111 Chapter XXIV. SKIRMISH AT ORANGE C. H., VA.

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I received report from Major Beaumont, of which I inclose copy:

MADISON MILLS, VA., July 29, 1862.

Lieutenant-Colonel KARGE:

I have received information that the forces lately guarding the bridge over the Rapidan beyond Rochelle have come Madison Court-House - said to be about 5,000 or 6,000 men, with several guns and some cavalry. Two companies of cavalry picketed here last night, but fled rapidly at my approach, before I could cross the ford. There is another ford a mile beyond this one, called Peyton Ford. Liberty Mills is 6 miles above here, occupied by about 2,000 or 3,000 men. I am finding corn at the mill, and shall push on after the two companies as far as Orange Court-House. I am waiting for my reconnoitering party to come in. If this force has advanced to Madison Court-House it is very likely that the firing we heard this morning was that force shelling the woods in that vicinity. I have sent Lieutenant Gray with a few carbineers to Peyton Ford to unearth a company of pickets said to be there.

BEAUMONT.

The pickets that left here this morning told the man at whose house they staid that they were rapidly evacuating Richmond on account of the sickness there. A great army they said was at Gordonsville and for 4 or 5 miles this side of there.

I ordered Major Beaumont back to camp.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOSEPH KARGE,

Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding First New Jersey Cavalry.

Brigadier-General BAYARD,

Commanding Cavalry Brigade.

AUGUST 2, 1862.- Skirmish at Orange Court-House, Va.

REPORTS.

Numbers 1.- Colonel Charles H. Tompkins, First Vermont Cavalry.

Numbers 2.- Colonel William E. Jones, Seventh Virginia Cavalry.

Numbers 1. Report of Colonel Charles H. Tompkins, First Vermont Cavalry.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST VERMONT CAVALRY,

Camp near Raccoon Ford, Va., August 3, 1862.

SIR: In obedience to verbal instructions from the brigadier-General commanding forces at Culpeper Court-House I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by First Vermont Cavalry in the recent skirmish at Orange Court-House, Va.:

Leaving camp at Raccoon Ford on the morning of the 2nd instant, we proceeded by way of Somerville, on the south side of the Rapidan River, to Orange Court-House. The scouting party consisted of the Fifth New York Cavalry, Colonel De Forest, and my own regiment, all under command of Brigadier General S. W. Crawford.

Arriving at the junction of the Fredericksburg and Rapidan roads in the order above stated, Companies D and I, of the First Vermont Cavalry, under Captain Flint, were ordered to the front as skirmishers, supported by one squadron Fifth New York Cavalry, under Captain Pratt. At a point near the junction of the roads above referred to the enemy's pickets, some 50 strong, were attacked and driven in, and at a