War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 1082 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXI.

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simultaneously front and rear. My brigade proceeded by the turnpike road, and, when within 3 miles of the Court-House, my front guard, under Captain [E. S.] Read [Twenty-sixth Virginia Battalion], was attacked by three companies of infantry. Captain Read engaged them with spirit. It was now discovered that the enemy held possession of the thickly-set woodland on both sides of the road. I ordered Major Davis, with Edgar's battalion, to skirmish on the right, and companies of the Forty-fifth Virginia to the left, Lieutenant-Colonel [E. H.] Harman commanding. After a short and sharp resistance, the enemy was driven from the woods towards a square redoubt in the open field which commanded the road. By this time the crash of Wharton's rifles was distinctly heard. Two hills, running at right angles to the road, lay between us and the enemy's position. A dense forest extended from my position to that of Colonel Wharton, passing within 200 yards of the enemy's redoubt. I moved two 12-pounder howitzers and two rifled pieces to the top of the first hill, and the Forty-fifth and Thirty-sixth Virginia under cover of the woodland along the right flank of the enemy's position. Edgar's battalion was placed in rear of the batteries. Our batteries opened upon the enemy, and were replied to by a storm of shell and grape, and Minie-balls from sharpshooters, who held the ravine and the opposite hill. The artillery was parts of Otey's, Stamp's, and Chapman's batteries. Our loss here was considerable in men and horses; the heaviest in Otey's battery. The fortification was rivetted with sod, and did not crumble much, although one shell did terrible work within. The distance here was 500 or 600 yards, too great for very affective firing, and I determined to move to the next hill. Edgar's battalion, under Major [A. M.] Davis [Forty-fifth Virginia], cleared the front of sharpshooters and drove them in gallant style, and the whole of the artillery - Otey's, Stamps', Chapman's, Bryan's, and Lowry's batteries - dashed in magnificent style over the ridge, down the slope and up to the top of the next hill, where they unlimbered within 300 yards of the enemy's fort, and opened a terrible cannonade upon it. Colonel Brown led the Forty-fifth along the woodland, driving the enemy before him, and McCausland with the Thirty-sixth in gallant style occupied a house and some stumps of trees, from which the enemy had greatly annoyed us. We lost several gallant officers and a number of brave men in these movements. Here I discovered that the enemy's position was much stronger than was at first supposed. Besides the square redoubt in front, there was one to the left and rear of the court-house, which was at that movement engaged by Colonel Wharton, and to the right and rear another strong fortress upon a high hill, which commanded both the other forts. These facts I communicated to you by Captain Marye, with the opinion my force could take the first redoubt by assault, but the sacrifice of life would be great, and that it could not be held the fort on the hill was first taken. Night fell upon us, and the wearied men slept upon their arms within a stone's throw of the enemy.

Just before day-break on the 11th, the noise like the marching of men was heard in the direction of the enemy's, which indicated that they were evacuating. This was confirmed by the opinion of Colonel Wharton, who communicated with me in person, whereupon I sent Captain [William E.] Fife (Thirty-sixth Virginia) with his company to approach the position of the enemy and ascertain whether the noise proceeded from the retirement from the front or from the arrival of re-enforcements, which we had reason to apprehend they were expecting. The captain replied by a shout from the walls that the enemy had gone. In twenty minutes the whole brigade was in hot pursuit. The road was