benefit us any, and fearing the loss of my entire command without the utmost promptitude and rapidity of movement, I ordered the issue of all the ammunition the troops could carry, the immediate destruction of the wagons and caissons, and that as soon as these dispositions could be made, the whole force should move by the stage road and the Double Bridges to the south side of the Nottoway again. Shortly after 12 m. the movement began, but the enemy having perfected his arrangements advanced simultaneously, and by the strength of an overwhelming force of infantry swept away our covering force, breaking in between McIntosh and Kautz, and taking McIntosh's line in reserve and left flank, threw the whole rear into confusion. Fitzhugh's battery, having an advantageous position, swung to the left in echelon and drove the enemy back into the woods, but the check was only temporary. The Second Ohio and Fifth New York swung around toward Kautz's division, followed by Fitzhugh's battery; these force were not able to get back to the main road and moved off when closely pressed through the woods. The artillery succeeded in getting off the field, but had finally to be abandoned because it could not penetrate the woods. Lieutenant Fitzhugh, finding himself isolated and pressed on all sides by the enemy, spiked his guns, and with about fifty of his gunners, armed with carbines and pistols picked up from the field, turned back and rode gallantly through the lines of the enemy, crossed the railroad, and reached our infantry. Lieutenants Fuger and Leahy also succeeded in getting through with a few men. Lieutenant Ward, of Maynadier's battery, took off one gun but was compelled to abandon it during the night march which ensued. It was thrown into a stream. Lieutenants Maynadier and Egan are missing. The officers of artillery behaved themselves in the handsomest manner.
General Kautz's division marched parallel to this (Third) for some time, but did not succeed in joining the main column. Shortly after I had crossed the Rowanty I received a message from General Kautz,
saying that he would endeavor to follow me,but failing would try to find his way into the lines of the infantry by some other route. The enemy continued to press heavily upon Colonel McIntosh, who made the most determined efforts to rally his men and cover the retreat. His exertions soon resulted in the establishment of a strong rear guard, consisting of the Second New York, Fifth New York, and the First Connecticut. At Stony Creek the enemy made a vigorous push with dismounted cavalry, but the command having been reformed and all of the First Brigade added to the rear guard they were held until everything had crossed. The brigade being had and the creek unfordable, at one time the situation was critical in the extreme. The enemy opened with artillery before our men were all across, throwing the rear into some confusion. The negroes who had joined our columns in large numbers in all parts of the route added greatly to the embarrassment. It is reported that those who were unable to get across the bridge or to keep up with the column in its rapid movements were sabered or shot by the rebels. About 500 of Kautz's men succeeded in joining my command and came in with it. Regarding it of the greatest importance that no time should be lost, I pushed with the utmost rapidity to the Nottoway, crossed at the Double Bridges between 10 and 11 p.m. and took the road to Jarratt's Station. The head of the column reached a point within two miles of Jarratt's by 2 a.m., and while waiting for a guide the column rested on the road nearly two hours. At dawn on the 30th of June it pushed on by the station, meeting no resistance except from a picket of the rebels. Taking a country road the column marched