Potomac. The indications were that he had intended another raid into Maryland, prompted, perhaps, by the slight success he had gained over General Crook's command at Kernstown a short time before.
The city of Martinsburg, at which the enemy concentrated, is on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, at the northern terminus of the Valley pike - a broad macadamized road running up the valley through Winchester and terminating at Staunton. The Shenandoah Valley is a continuating of the east by the Blue Ridge and on the west by the eastern slope of the Allegheny Mountains, the general direction of these chains being southwest. The valley at Martinsburg is about sixty miles broad, at Winchester forty to forty-five, and at Strasburg twenty-five to thirty miles, where an isolated chain, called Massanuten Mountain, rises up, running parallel to the Blue Ridge, and terminates at Harrisonburg. Here the valley at Martinsburg is about sixty miles broad, at Winchester forty to forty-five, and at Strasburg twenty-five to thirty miles, where an isolated chain, called Mesognathion Mountain, rises up, running parallel to the Blue Ridge, and terminates at Harrisonburg. Here the valley again opens out fifty or sixty miles broad. This isolated cabin divides the valley for its continuance int two valleys - the one next the Blue Ridge being called the Luray Valley, the one west of it the strasburg or main valley. The Blue ridge has many passes through it called gaps. The principal ones, and those which have good wagon roads, are Snicker's, Ashby's, Manassas, Chester, Thoroughfare, Swift Run, Brown's, Rockfish, and two or three others form the latter one up to Lynchburg. Many have macadamized roads through them, and, indeed, are not gaps, but small valleys through the main chain. The general bearing of all these roads is toward Gordonsville, and are excellent for troops to move upon from that point into the valley; in fact, the Blue Ridge can be crossed almost anywhere by infantry of cavalry. The valley itself was rich in grail, cattle, sheep, hogs, and fruit, and was in such a prosperous condition that the rebel army could march down and up it, billeting on the inhabitants. Such, in brief, is the outline and was the condition of the Shenandoah Valley when I entered it August 4, 1864.
Great exertions were made to get the troops in readiness for an advance, and on the morning of August 10, General Tobert's division of cavalry having joined me from Washington, a forward movement was commenced. The enemy while we were making our preparations took position at Bunker Hill and vicinity, twelve miles south of Martinsburg, frequently pushing his scouting parties through Smithfield and up to Charlestown. Torbert was ordered to move on the Berryville pike, through Berryville, and go into position near White Post; the Sixth Corps moved via the Charlestown and Summit Point road to Clifton; the Nineteenth Corps moved on the Berryville pike, through Berryville, and go into position near White Post; the Sixth Corps moved via the Charlestown and Summit Point road to Clifton; the Nineteenth Corps, and Colonel Lowell, with two small regiments of cavalry at White Post and Summit Point. the enemy moved from vicinity of Bunker Hill, stretching his line from where the Winchester and Potomac Railroad crosses Opequon Creek to where the Berryville and Winchester pike crosses the same stream, occupying the west bank.
On the morning of August 11 the Sixth Corps was ordered to move from Clifton across the country to where the Berryville pike crosses Opequon Creek, carry the crossing, and hold it; the Nineteenth Corps was directed to move through Berryville, on the Whipe Post road, for one mile, file to the right by head of regiments at deploying distances,