War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0055 Chapter XXXVII. ENGAGEMENT AT KELLY'S FORD, VA.

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farther advance would be opposed by artillery. They opened a fire with shot and shell upon our column as it came up the road, having three pieces in position commanding the road, consisting of two 10-pounder rifles and one 6-pounder gun. On their extreme right was posted another section of their artillery, which was not used, being probably held in reserve to check our farther advance.

Having already expended one-half of my ammunition, I had remaining 150 rounds when I entered this field, and could only fire, therefore, at long intervals, deeming it prudent to reserve my fire for the opposing columns of cavalry and at long and uncertain ranges upon the enemy's artillery, as it was evident they intended to charge us at once.

In this conclusion we were not at fault, for the enemy soon appeared in force, in our immediate front, extending from the right to the left of the road, with the evident object of driving in the supports on either flank of the battery. As I observed this, I opened upon them with shell at about 1,500 yards, and at a distance of say, 1,000 yards with spherical case, continuing it until they arrived at about 400 yards, when, obliquing my sections to both flanks, I opened on them with double-shotted canister with great effect. Our cavalry at this moment charged the line of the enemy, driving them back in confusion, when I immediately changed the direction of my fire to the enemy's artillery . It now became evident, both from the statements of wounded prisoners, and other sources, that the enemy were being largely re-enforced both by artillery and cavalry. We,however, maintained our position for about an hour replying at intervals to their artillery, which was most advantageously posted and commanded every approach by the front and flank, their cavalry being at the same time masked by the woods on either flank of their batteries,which kept up a constant and harassing fire upon us, to which, however, I could only reply occasionally, thinking it prudent to reserve a supply to cover the recrossing, should it be necessary to do so. Upon receiving an order from General Averell to fall back, I limbered up, recrossed the ford, and placed two pieces in position on the opposite bank to cover the crossing of the remaining columns, sending the balance to Morrisville with a regiment of cavalry, the First Rhode Island. The recrossing having been effected without loss, in conformity with orders I proceeded to Morrisville, where the column halted until daybreak, when we returned to camp via Hartwood Church.

As regards the loss of the enemy, I have no means of determining, but from my own observation I should say that it far exceeded ours, their prisoners saying also that they suffered very heavily.

As to the effect of this affair upon the morale of our cavalry, it only strengthens my belief in their superiority and efficiency over that of the enemy, as was clearly demonstrated in each encounter.

I beg to tender my acknowledge to the staff and officers of General Averell's command for the courtesy and consideration shown to me and my command, it being the first occasion on which my battery has ever had the opportunity to maneuver with cavalry, and they were, therefore, perhaps in some respects deficient in the requirements of this branch of the service.

I have to report the following casualties: One man (Private Richard Paxton) and 2 horses killed; 2 sets of horse equipments unavoidably lost; 1 wheel for 6-pounder carriage badly damaged; 1 sponge-bucket and 2 handspikes lost; 6 sponge-staffs broken; 3 felling axes loaned to cavalry and not returned.