War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0095 Chapter XXXVII. IMBODEN'S EXPEDITION INTO W. VA., ETC.

Search Civil War Official Records

the officers and men of my command. I cannot mention cases of individual gallantry; the whole command deserve the highest praise.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel, Commanding.


Assistant Adjutant-General, Weston, W. Va.,

Numbers 3. Report of Colonel John J. Polsley, Eighth West Virginia Infantry, of operations April 24-26.


LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to report the history of the detachment under my command from Friday morning, 24th ultimo, the date of the attack on our forces at Beverly, up to the 26th ultimo, the date of arrival at Buckhannon.

On the morning of the 24th, I was informed by you that the enemy was about to attack in force, and ordered to hold my command in readiness for action. Shortly afterward I was directed to support a section of Ewing's battery, near the church, at the lower and of the town, and to guard against a flank attack.

I had not been in this position long when, the enemy appearing in force in front, the half of my detachment, Captain Gardner commanding was ordered there to the support of Lieutenant-Colonel Scott, of the Second [West] Virginia, and the enemy also making demonstrations on the opposite side of the river, I was ordered to take position near the bridge with the remainder of my detachment, and hold it. I remained at the bridge until about 2 p.m., when I was directed by the colonel commanding to cross the bridge and take the advance for Buckhannon, and to fight my way through if the enemy endeavored to intercept. I had hardly crossed the bridge when another order was received, directing me to march for Philippi, and to take the advance. We moved slowly and in good order a distance of 8 or 9 miles, and halted for the night.

Resumed the march at daylight next morning, and hastened by forced marches, by way of Philippi, to Buckhannon to the relief of General Roberts, and joined him there the evening of the 26th.

My detachment, not having been engaged in the action, met with no losses. Two wagoners, with their wagons and mules, were captured early in the morning previous to the attack.

I had destroyed the following-named stores, which we were unable to transport, viz, about 3,000 rations, 2,000 pounds of forage, 30,000 rounds of ammunition, 50 Enfield rifles, 100 sets of infantry equipments, and all the camp and garrison equipage.

I have no hesitation in saying that the force which attacked us there amounted to at least 3,000 infantry from 1,000 to 1,500 cavalry, and six pieces of artillery, and that our safe retreat with so little loss was entirely owing to the disposition made by the colonel commanding.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Regiment.

Lieutenant J. COWLES,