established a new line of battle. I sent General Kearny's division to the left to close a gap between my left and the main body of the army, keeping General Stevens' and Ricketts' troops to hold the right. After dark I sent my artillery to the rear by a road I had sent Major Hunt and Dr. Milhau, of my staff, to examine, as it was too dark to use it with effect. Somewhat later the enemy attacked General Ricketts' troops, and they gave way. A mile farther to the rear Colonel McLean's brigade was drawn up and covered the retreat across Bull Run. Part of these troops forded Bull Run a short distance above the stone bridge, and the others crossed the bridge, which had been repaired the night before. Where the Sudley Church road joins the Warrenton turnpike near Cub Run I halted some cavalry, and sent it out to obstruct this road and hold it until all our troops had passed. Late in the afternoon some cavalry and artillery were seen on this road, and a few shots were exchanged with my extreme right.
At about 11 p.m. we reached Centreville, and in obedience to orders from general headquarters took post at the north of the town. The next day my corps was directed to form a reserve in rear of General Franklin's corps, which we found at Centreville.
On the 1st of September, at 1 p.m., I learned from General Pope that the enemy was threatening our rear, and he detached General Hooker from his division to take command of some troops near Germantown to hold the enemy in check, advancing on the Little River turnpike. General Sumner and I were ordered to march at daylight the next morning across the Little River turnpike in the direction of Chantilly to aid in this movement. I had scarcely returned to my headquarters and given the necessary orders before I received notice from the commanding general that the enemy was about to attack us, and to get my corps under arms. I was next sent for to general headquarters, and at 3.30 p.m. ordered to fall back on the road to Fairfax Court-House 2 1/2 miles and face to the left, to aid General Reno in driving back the enemy, then threatening from the Little River turnpike our right flank and line of retreat. At 4 p.m. General Kearny's troops were in motion, followed by General Grover, now in command of General Hooker's division. At 5.50 firing commenced by General Reno on the enemy between the Little River and Warrenton turnpikes. The enemy were within half a mile of the latter when they attacked him. A portion of General Reno's troops gave way, but General Birney's brigade, of General Kearny's division, gallantly supported them. General Kearny rode forward alone to reconnoiter in his usual gallant, not to say reckless, manner, and came upon a rebel regiment. In attempting to escape he was killed. The country has to mourn one of her most gallant defenders. At the close of the siege of Yorktown he relieved General Hamilton in the command of the division and led it in the various battles on the Peninsula, commencing with Williamsburg. His name is identified with its glory.
Our troops held the battle-field till near daylight, when they received orders to retire to Fairfax Court-House. Soon after daylight I reported to the commanding general, who directed me to take post with my corps on the left of the town. At 9.30, September 2, I was informed that General Sumner's corps would occupy Flint Hill, and that I should with my corps take post on his right on the road to Vienna, as the enemy were moving to or beyond our right. At 11 a.m. I received orders directing the whole army to fall back to the lines in front of Washington, my corps to Fort Lyon. Left Fairfax Court-House at 11.40 a.m., and the troops reoccupied their old lines the next day.