War of the Rebellion: Serial 070 Page 0163 Chapter XLIX. EXPEDITION TO POPE'S CREEK, VA.

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JUNE 11-21, 1864.-Expedition from Point Lookout, Md., to Pope's Creek, Va.

Report of Colonel Alonzo G. Draper, Thirty-sixth U. S. Colored Troops.


Point Lookout, Md., June 22, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to report that on the evening of the 11th instant I embarked on the steam transports Georgia, Charleston, Long Branch, and Favorite with 475 men of the Thirty-sixth U. S. Colored Troops and 49 men of the Second and Fifth U. S. Cavalry, under command of First Lieutenant J. C. Denney, Fifth U. S. Cavalry, and proceeded to Pope's Creek, Va., on the Potomac River, for the purpose of procuring horses for the quartermaster's department, and farming implements, transportation, &c., for the contraband settlement on the Patuxent River. We touched at Saint Mary's River, Md., to communicate with the gun-boats which had been designated by the fleet captain, Eastman, to accompany the expedition. At Saint Mary's the gun-boats Resolute ran into the transport steamer Long Branch, inflicting injuries which rendered it necessary to sent her back for repairs. The troops on the Long Branch were therefore transferred to the Georgia.

On the morning of the 12th we landed at Pope's Creek and divided into two detachments, 300 men, under Captain Hart, of the Thirty-Sixth, taking the road running by a northerly course to Smith's Wharf, and thence along the Rappahannock to Warsaw, where all detachments were to until on the of the 13th.

The remaining infantry, under my own command, accompanied by 100 sailors under Captain Street, of the gun-boat Fuchsia, took the road to Montross. From this column I detached seventy-five men to canvass the road to Currioman Bay and rejoin me at Montross. From both columns detachments were thrown off on all the cross-roads leading to Warsaw to collect horses and cattle and to drive all scattering parties of the enemy toward Wind-Mill Point, where we hoped to meet and destroy them. One company was sent forward to hold Durrettsville, at the forks of the road nine miles above Warsaw. Both columns reached Warsaw at the appointed time without any remark-able incidents except occasional guerrilla firing, which did no damage.

On the evening of the 12th I rode with a cavalry escort to the Rappahannock, opposite the town of Tappahannock, where I communicated with the gun-boats Jacob Bell and Freeborn. The officers of these boats informed me that horses were abundant at Occupacia Creek and Layton's Wharf, on the south side of the Rappahannock. Finding horses scarce and poor on the Northern Neck, between the Potomac and Rappahannock, I resolved to transfer the field of operations to the south bank of the Rappahannock. Accordingly, after directing the troops to march the next day to Durrettsville, I rode the same night, the 13th, to Machodoc Creek, on the Potomac, and communicated my intention to Lieutenant Hooker, commanding, of the flotilla, with the request that he should convoy the transports to Union Wharf, on the Rappahannock. From Machodoc Creek two transport were dispatched to Point Lookout, loaded with captured property, with orders to report at Union Wharf.

I returned on the morning of the 14th to Durrettsville, where I found the troops concentrated, except a company under Captain Hatlinger, who had mistaken the route, but who rejoined us in the evening.