Numbers 497. Report of Colonel Bradley T. Johnson, C. S. Army, commanding Jones' brigade.
HEADQUARTERS JONES' BRIGADE, Camp Montpelier, August 15, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor herewith to forward reports of regimental and brigade commanders of the operations about Gettysburg, on the 2nd and 3rd ultimo. I have caused Captain [R.] Cleary, assistant adjutant-general of brigade at the time, to make a statement, furnishing a correct account of the whole action of the brigade during the engagements, which is herewith forwarded. * I was assigned to this command on July 4, and found it lying in line of battle along the ridge of hills west of Gettysburg. Marching that night about 10 p. m., we were on the road until daylight. Soon after, my flank being threatened by the enemy's cavalry, I detached Major [Oscar] White and part of the Forty-eighth Virginia to cover it as skirmishers. He, during the course of the morning, was charged by the troop escorting Major-General Howard, U. S. Army, and drove them off handsomely, bringing in 1 prisoner. We bivouacked that night beyond Fairfield, and on the night of the 6th a mile from Waynesborough. On the 7th, went into bivouac three miles and a half from Hagerstown, on the Leitersburg road. On the 10th, the division marched, this brigade being rear guard, and went into bivouac 2 miles west of Hagerstown, on the Williamsport road. On the 11th, took position in line of battle, and employed the men in throwing up field works, which, though rude, materially strengthened the position. They were exceedingly anxious to meet the enemy, feeling confident of their ability to avenge Gettysburg. The Twenty-fifth Virginia, Lieutenant-Colonel [J. A.] Robinson, covered the front of the brigade as skirmishers, and promptly checked the advance of the enemy's line, which on the 12th came up, feeling our position. On Monday night [the 13th], we withdrew, and crossed the Potomac, fording it at Williamsport, bringing off every man and gun. On the 14th, we bivouacked near Martinsburg. On the 15th, near Darkesville. On the 17th, received orders from division headquarters to return to Martinsburg and destroy the railroad, which was done. On that and the 18th, were much annoyed by the enemy's cavalry, which kept driving in our cavalry pickets, and threatening the working parties. Their audacity increased so that on Sunday [the 19th], they came within a mile of the town. I took the Fiftieth Virginia, Colonel [A. S.] Vandeventer, and, after a skirmish lasting the whole day, drove them back to within a mile and a half of Hedgesville. The Fiftieth Virginia was relieved as skirmishers in the afternoon by the Forty-eighth, Lieutenant-Colonel [R. H.] Dungan. Both regiments, officers and men, behaved well. Our loss, none. Enemy left 6 killed and 1 wounded. A section of Hart's artillery, Hampton's brigade, did very great service, and I had the benefit of the advice and presence of Colonel L. S.