War of the Rebellion: Serial 087 Page 0838 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LIV.

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The officers and men of my command are entitled to credit for the vigilance and promptness with which every order was executed during the excitement of the attack, and for their endurance without murmuring during the subsequent march. It would be difficult to select those most anxious to do their whole duty.

Respectfully submitted.

Your obedient servant,


Major Eleventh Pennsylvania Cavalry, Commanding Brigade.

Captain M. J. ASCH,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

Numbers 342. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Franklin A. Stratton, Eleventh Pennsylvania Cavalry, commanding Second Brigade, of operations December 10.


In the Field, December 12, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor most respectfully to report in relation to the action of the 10th instant that pursuant to orders received on the morning of that day to support the picket-line of the brigade, I moved out at 10 a.m. with all the available force of the command (nearly 500 men to the vicinity of Fort Holly, and after a little reconnoitering of the ground proceeded to make my dispositions by sending a company of the Eleventh Pennsylvania Cavalry (mounted) to re-enforce each of the two main picket reserves, dismounting the remainder of the regiment except two companies and the detachment of the First District of Columbia Cavalry and placing the men in position to the right and left of the small house, about 300 yards in front of Fort Holly. The two companies left mounted were placed under a good officer (Captain Nimmon) a little to the left and abreast of Fort Holly, so as to protect the horses, which were sent to the rear of the hill on which the redoubt stands. This squadron had orders also to be ready to charge the enemy's line of skirmishers should he push out into the open field. The men had dismounted, but were only partly in position when the enemy charged the outer pickets in front of the fort with dismounted cavalry, driving them back to the left reserve and immediately followed with a strong skirmish line of dismounted cavalry and infantry. A sharp contest ensued for a few minutes, when the enemy's infantry advanced a skirmish line from the wood on our left flank and opened fire on our left and rear. The ground over which they advanced had been covered by a strong picket-line of the Fifth Pennsylvania Cavalry, which withdrew without giving any indication of the approach of the enemy from that direction. In consequence of this enfilading fire, and finding Captain Tripp and several men already wounded, I withdrew to the crest of the hill on the left of the redoubt, sending about forty men along the line of the old rebel rifle-pits to the right of the fort, where they were joined soon after by the reserve from the left picket station. The enemy, having evidently met with some loss, did not press his