strewn with guns, knapsacks, blankets, overcoats, wagons, hospital and sutlers' stores, horses, and men. They made a fruitless effort to burn the town, but the flames were extinguished and a sufficient guard placed over the stores and property by Captain Stanton. At the foot of Cotton Hill we came upon the enemy's felled across the road. I here directed Colonel Wharton, with his brigade and Patton's regiment, to take a mountain path to the left endeavor again to reach the enemy's rear. As men were brought forward, and two companies from the Twenty-second and one from the Forty-fifth Regiments, as skirmishers, under Major [R. A.] Bailey, who drove the enemy before them (while the pioneers under Lieutenant [W. T.] Hart cleared the road of obstructions), the column moved on, almost without halting, until near the top of the hill, where Major Bailey was met by a fresh regiment on its march to re-enforce Fayette. I ordered Colonel Browne, with the Forty-fifth, to sustain Major Bailey, and brought McCausland to the front. The enemy placed two howitzers in position on the hill, and opened upon us with grape and canister, but our loss was not great. Here he made stout resistance, but, by the determined courage of Browne and Bailey, was driven from his position and retreated double-quick down the Montgomery's Ferry. McCausland, with the Thirty-sixth, kept close upon him. Captain [Lieutenant] Jarrell, at the head of the skirmishers, displayed great courage and energy. The entire brigade went down the hill with a shout and at double-quick time. I had previously ordered a 12-pounder howitzer to the front for the purpose of destroying the enemy as he crossed the river. Lieutenant Norvell brought down the piece, at a full gallop, and planted it on the river bank. The enemy set fire to his magazines and attempted to destroy all his commissary stores. By this time half his force had crossed the river under cover of four guns planted on the opposite bank; the rest retreated down the south bank. Lieutenant Norvell, by a dozen well-directed shots, silenced or drove away the enemy's four pieces. The ferry flats had been carried by the enemy to the opposite side and set on fire. I called out for half a dozen bold swimmers to swim the river with their hats on, extinguish the flames, and bring over the ferry-boats. Dr. Watkins, of the Thirty-Sixth Virginia; Lieutenant Samuels, of my staff; W. H. Harman, Forty-fifth Virginia; Allen Thompson, Forty-fifth Virginia, and six or eight others sprang into the river and boldly swam, under a shower of grape and canister. These brave men seized the burning boat, and, making fire buckets of their hats, extinguished the flames as they rowed it over. A Yankee lieutenant and 10 men here surrendered to Lieutenant Samuels. I ordered Colonel McCausland, with his own and Colonel Patton's regiment and two pieces of artillery, across the river, and, with the remainder of my brigade and Colonel Wharton's command, which was next to my own, moved after the enemy's column on the left bank. Several sharp skirmishes occurred during the day, and at nightfall we came upon them as they were preparing to encamp, drove them before us, and slept upon their ground at Buster's. Lieutenant-Colonel [J. Lyle] Clarke [Thirtieth Battalion Virginia Sharpshooters], of Colonel Wharton's brigade, in command of advanced skirmishers, drove the enemy from the cornfield. The pursuit had been so rapid that our supply wagons did not come up in time, and we procured supplies from the country people and renewed the pursuit early in the morning.
During the day the enemy on the opposite side of the river attempted to burn all the salt furnaces, but were prevented, by the rapidity of the pursuit and the well-directed shot of Otey's, Stamps', and Bryan's batteries,