Numbers 586. Reports of Lieutenant Colonel E. V. White, Thirty-fifth Virginia Battalion, of engagement at Brandy Station (June 9), and expedition into Maryland (June 17).
JUNE 10, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor herewith to send you a report of the part taken by the battalion (Thirty-fifth Virginia) which I commanded in the cavalry fight of Brandy Station, June 9. When it was known that the enemy was advancing, and we had been taken to the front to meet him, I was ordered by you to prepare to support the Twelfth Regiment (Colonel Harman's). I commenced immediately to form my men into line of battle. Before my line was completed, however, I was ordered to charge the column of the enemy. I called to my men, and they answered me with a cheerful and gallant spirit, not a man flinching from the stern duty that awaited him. We had not proceeded over 200 yards, when we were met by the Twelfth, retreating in disorder before the confident and fiercely pursuing enemy. Of course, the ranks of the squadron which I was leading in the charge were thrown into confusion, but this untoward circumstance checked us only for a moment. We continued our dash upon the enemy, driving him back before us over 100 yards, into the woods from which he had advanced. Here he was re-enforced, and we were compelled to fall back before his superior numbers, thus largely increased. I soon, however, succeeded in rallying my men, and we charged him over a half mile through the woods. At the edge of the woods, an officer, who was supposed from his uniform to be a general, was killed, while earnestly but vainly endeavoring to check the flight of his men. A major was captured by Private Sheehan, of Company B, after a fierce hand-to-hand conflict, in which he was severely handled. We captured and sent to the rear 25 commissioned officers and privates, among them a staff officer. I would here state-as probably some of the prisoners captured by my men were taken back by persons connected with other commands - that I ordered my men to turn over all prisoners as soon as they could find parties to take charge of them. While I was fighting the enemy in front, my squadron was charged in the rear by another considerable force, which was met and driven back in most gallant style by the squadron, which had been disordered by the broken ranks of the Twelfth and had thus been separated from me. While I can proudly boast of the coolness and stubborn courage displayed by all the men of the Thirty-fifth Battalion upon that occasion, I cannot in justice omit to call your particular attention to the conspicuous daring of First Lieutenant Joshua R. Crown, Company B. Ever in the front, dealing telling blows upon the vandal enemy, he elicited the warm admiration of all who beheld him, and infused his own chivalrous spirit into those who followed, thus proving a tower of strength to us and a stumbling-block to the foe. If ever a man deserved the reward of promotion for meritorious conduct, he did in the opening fight of the great battle of Brandy Station. About 1 o'clock, after it was known that the enemy had succeeding flanking us, and had appeared in great force in our rear, I was ordered to join the Twelfth, and to support it in case of need. On