War of the Rebellion: Serial 044 Page 0547 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records


On the 13th, we moved on toward Berryville, but before reaching Millwood the advance of the infantry was discovered by some of the enemy's cavalry who had come up from Berry's Ferry [apparently en route to Berryville], a result which would have been avoided had General Jenkins occupied, Millwood during the night before, as he was ordered to do. Finding our movements discovered, the division was marched with the utmost celerity through Millwood upon Berryville, where Jenkins' brigade, after driving in the enemy's cavalry, was found held at bay by the Federal artillery. Arriving on the field, and communicating with General Jenkins, it was apparent that the enemy were preparing to evacuate the place, but still held it, as well as I could judge, with infantry, cavalry, and artillery. I immediately determined to surround them, if possible, and ordered General Jenkins to march to the left of the town, to cut off the retreat of the enemy toward Winchester. The infantry, save one brigade, without being halted, were ordered to move to the right and left of the place, to unite in its rear. These movements were begun and executed under cover, but, before their execution was much advanced, it became apparent to me that the enemy was retreating, and I ordered the Alabama brigade, Colonel O'Neal commanding, to advance rapidly upon the town, which was done. I was mortified to learn that the enemy, abandoning his tents, a few stores, &tc., had left his cavalry and artillery to keep our cavalry in check, and had some time before retreated with his infantry toward Charlestown, without being discovered. I found that the approaches to the town were well defended by rifle-pits and earthworks for guns, and that with an adequate force it was capable of being strongly defended. It had, however, been held by a force too small to admit of a successful defense against my command. The enemy's force there consisted of two small regiments of infantry, one of cavalry, and a battery of rifled guns, in all about 1, 800 men, under the command of Colonel [A. T.] McReynolds. Neither my troops nor General Jenkins' cavalry suffered any loss, the enemy firing only a few rounds of artillery after my arrival.