the other three brigades of the division over to the Chester Gap road, and stay there during the night, and at the same times ordered mt to remain witch my brigade and the Fourth Alabama Regiment until relieved by Lieutenant General A. P. Hill, and then to follow the division, and overtake it as soon as possible. He stated that General Hill was to relieve me during the night, or, at furthest, by daybreak. So I remained, but it was 9 a. m. before I was relieved. I then started to overtake the division.
When I reached the Chester Gap road, I found it filled with the rear of General Hill's long wagon train, the reset of that train and all of his troops having already passed. To get by these wagons and the artillery in the mountain road, was a work of no small difficulty. It was near night before I could do it. I succeeded, however, in passing them and the corps which had bivouacked near Flint Hill, and with my brigade bivouacked 2 miles this side of Flint Hill.
At daylight next day, the march was resumed. I halted for an hour or more at Gaines' Cross-Roads, which is 2 miles this side of my camp of the night before, to wait for the Fifteenth Alabama Regiment(Colonel Oates), which was holding the mountain road until General Hill's corps should come up and relieve it. That regiment having joined me, the march was resumed, General Hill's corps being close behind me.
When near Newby's Cross-Roads, 2 men of the cavalry, coming from one of those roads which leads to Amissiville to their horses shod, they had met a squad of Yankee cavalry coming from the opposite direction. Colonel [W. C.] Oates immediately proposed to take his regiment, which was in front, and go forward and make a reconnaissance. I accepted his service, and he advanced beyond the crossing of the roads. Very soon his skirmisher were engaged with those of the enemy. After some times, as I heard and saw nothing but skirmishing, I concluded to move on, General Hill sending me word that he would relieve Colonel Oates and let him follow me.
After moving on less than half a mile, a shell, much to my sunrise, passed over my line, and then others in rapid succession. They had been fired by the enemy at our skirmishers. My line was concealed from the enemy by an intervening hill and the cut of the road, so I continued to move on unharmed.
When I had almost reached the ford of Hazel River, I received a request from General Hill to wait for his artillery, and let it follow me. I according halted. After waiting for some time, there came to me, instead of artillery, another message from General Hill, to the effect that it was necessary to drive the enemy back from their potion in the mountain, and that he wished me to move my command on their flank and rear to the road by which they had come, and thus cut off their retreat, and to do this by a route which the bearer of the message (Lieutenant[Robert C.]) would show me.
The request seemed reasonable. The enemy had evidently gotten artillery into a mountain position difficult to be carried by a front attack, from which position difficult to be carried by a front attack, from which position they commanded the road at several points, including, I think, the ford, and thus, unless dislodged, could greatly annoy troops and trains passing by, if not stop their progress. My command was the one most conveniently situated to execute the suggested movement. I thought it right, therefore, to accede to General Hill's request. Signifying this to Lieutenant Stanard, he