War of the Rebellion: Serial 090 Page 0159 Chapter LV. THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

left flank of the Nineteenth Corps, I at once sent orders to the Sixth Corps to fall back to some tenable position in rear; and to General Emory, commanding the Nineteenth Corps, that as his left was turned he should fall back and take position on the right of the Sixth. I should, Perhaps, have stated that upon the original line the forces from left to right were posted in the order of, first, the Army of West Virginia, Major-General Crook commanding; second, the Nineteenth Corps, Brevet Major-General Emory commanding; third, the Sixth Corps,commanded by myself, and in my absence by Brevet Major-General Ricketts. The cavalry, under the command of Brevet Major-General Torbert, was disposed upon the two flanks. The first lines of the Army of West Virginia and the Nineteenth Corps were entrenched, but the Sixth Corps was not, as its naturally strong position rendered any defenses unnecessary. Indeed, the latter was held with a view to its acting rather as a movable force than as a part of the line.

Returning from this digression and resuming the narrative, the Sixth Corps, of which two divisions were on the march to the support of the left, at once moved to the rear on receiving instructions to that effect, as did the Nineteenth Corps, which had been slightly engaged with a portion of the rebel force, which had evidently attacked by way of a diversion. About this time General Ricketts was seriously wounded and the command of the Sixth Corps devolved upon Brevet Major-General Getty, who moved steadily tot he rear, and by well timed attacks did much toward checking the enemy's advance, giving time thereby for the change of front which was necessary and for taking up the new position. A portion of the First Division, under Generals Wheaton and Mackenzie, and a part of the artillery of the corps, also behaved admirably in checking the enemy and giving time for the rest of the troops to take position. Several pieces of the artillery we lost here, it being impossible to bring off the guns, owing to their horses being killed. Meanwhile the Second Division had taken up the position indicated, with its left resting on the pike. The Third and First were forming on its right, while on the right of the Sixth Corps the Nineteenth was being formed. One or two not very persistent attacks had been repulsed. About this time Major-General Sheridan came up and assumed command and I returned to the command of the Sixth Corps. Soon after the lines had been fully formed the enemy made a sharp attack upon the Sixth Corps, but was rudely repulsed, falling back several hundred yards to a stone wall behind which a part of his line took shelter. The position of the troops at this time from left to right was, first, the Second, Third, and First Divisions of the Sixth Corps; second, the Nineteenth corps, the cavalry being on both flanks. Everything having been prepared and the men somewhat rested from the fatigue of the morning, an advance was ordered by General Sheridan of the entire line. The Second and first Divisions moved forward steadily, but the Third was for a time seriously checked by the fire from behind the stone small before alluded to. A movement made by the Nineteenth Corps toward flanking this wall (in which a regiment of the Third Division, Sixth Corps, detached for the purpose, took part) shook the enemy, and a gallant charge of the line started him into full flight, pursued by our victorious forces. But little further resistance was experienced in the advance to Cedar Creek, where our infantry was halted in its old camp, while the pursuit was continued by the cavalry. The enemy being entirely demoralized and his ranks completely broken,

he retreated without regard to order. The battle, which in its earlier