of twenty men who had joined me I proceeded to Martinsburg, which place we entered that night, while occupied by several hundred Federal troops, and brought off 15 horses and several prisoners.
Returning to my command I learned that Grant had crossed the Rapidan. With about forty men I moved down the north bank of the Rappahannock to assail his communications wherever opened, and sent to other detachments, under Captains Richards and Chapman, to embarrass Sigel as much as possible. Captain Richards had a skirmish near Winchester (then the enemy's rear), in which several of them were killed and wounded. Captain Chapman attacked a wagon train which was heavily guarded near Strasburg, capturing about 30 prisoners with an equal number of horses, &c. Near Belle Plain, in King George, I captured an ambulance train and brought off about 75 horses and mules, 40 prisoners, &c.
A few day after I made a second attempt near the same place, but discovered that my late attack had caused them to detach such a heavy force to guard their trains and line of communications that another successful attack on them was impracticable.
About May 10 I attacked a cavalry outpost in the vicinity of Front Royal, capturing 1 captain and 15 men and 75 horses, and sustained no loss.
About May 20, with about 150 men, I moved to the vicinity of Strasburg with the view of capturing the wagon trains of General Hunter, who had then moved up the Valley. When the train appeared I discovered that it was guarded by about 600 infantry and 100 cavalry. A slight skirmish ensued between their cavalry and a part of my command, in which their cavalry was routed with a loss of 8 prisoners and horses, besides several killed, but falling back on their infantry my men in turn fell back with a loss of 1 killed. While we did not capture the train, one great object had been accomplished - the detachment of a heavy force to guard their communications. After the above affair only one wagon train ever went up to Hunter, which was still more heavily guarded. He then gave up his line of communication.
After the withdrawal of the enemy's forces from Northern Virginia for several weeks but few opportunities were offered for any successful incursions upon them. Many enterprises on a small scale were, however, undertaken by detachments of the command, of which no note has been taken.
About June 20 moved into Fairfax and routed a body of cavalry near Centerville, killing and wounded 6 or 8 and capturing 31 prisoners, securing their horses, &c.
A few days afterward we took Duffield's Depot, on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad; secured about 50 prisoners, including 2 lieutenants, and a large amount of stores. The train had passed a few minutes before we reached the place. On my way there I had left Lieutenant Nelson, commanding Company A, at Charlestown for the purpose of intercepting and notifying me of any approach in my rear from harper's Ferry. As I had anticipated, a body of cavalry, largely superior in numbers to his force, moved out from that point. Lieutenant Nelson gallantly charged and routed them, killing and wounding several and taking 19 prisoners and 27 horses. We sustained no loss on this expedition.
On July 4, reaching of General Early's movement down the Valley, I moved with my command east of the Blue Ridge for the purpose of co-operating with him, and crossed the Potomac at Point of Rocks,