every difficulty on that trying occasion, and I can frankly assure you the courteous politeness and easy composure so conspicuous in all your actions inspired confidence in all around you.
I remain, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major General D. E. SICKLES,
Commanding Third Army Corps.
HDQRS. FIRST CAV. DIV., ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
May 18, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to submit the following report, with accompanying papers, of the service performed by the troops under my command, consisting of the Second Brigade and Martin's horse battery, during the recent engagements near Chancellorsville:
On the morning of April 29, I reported for duty with the Second Brigade (the Eighth Pennsylvania, Sixth New York, and Seventeenth Pennsylvania) to Major-general Slocum, commanding the Fifth, Eleventh, and Twelfth Army Corps, and by his directions a regiment of cavalry was assigned to each army corps - the Eighth Pennsylvania to the Fifth, Sixth New York to the Twelfth, and the Seventeenth Pennsylvania to the Eleventh Corps - for the march from the Rappahannock to Chancellorsville. I myself moved with the front of General Slocum's column, and directed the operations of the Sixth New York in its skirmishes with the enemy, while Colonel Devin, the brigade commander, took charge of the cavalry with Major-General Meade's corps, that took a different route. Some skirmishing occurred, and the cavalry of both commands took nearly 300 prisoners on the road to Chancellorsville, which place was reached on the 30th, about 2 p. m. The brigade was then reformed, but kept on constant picket service to the front and right of the army, and orders were sent for Martin's (Sixth New York) battery to join at Chancellorsville.
The Sixth New York Cavalry, under Lieutenant-Colonel McVicar, was ordered to move down the road leading to Spotsylvania Court-House, to take post in front of our infantry, and send strong detachments out on that road to feel the enemy in that direction. From the nature of the country and the difficulties encountered, the Sixth New York advanced beyond where it was proposed for it to go, and the enemy placed himself in force in its rear. On seeing this, the brave McVicar immediately charged them, and although, I regret to add, he lost his life in so doing, yet such was the dash and spirit of the affair that comparatively few were lost or captured, and the movement, as has since been ascertained from the enemy, perplexed them not a little.
On the morning of the 1st, Martin's battery joined, and such of the command as could be withdrawn were placed in camp near Hunting Creek, to feed and rest.
On the 2nd, the command moved gradually to the front, when, about 4 o'clock in the afternoon, I received orders from Major-General Hooker to proceed down the Plank road and turn to the south after a number of trains the enemy were moving in the direction of Orange Court-House, Major-General Sickles, with the Third Army Corps, having already started after them.
I joined General Sickles in about an hour's time, and found him sharply engaged with the enemy, but driving them about 2 miles