War of the Rebellion: Serial 090 Page 0510 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LV.

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tion of Milford; found the enemy's pickets at Bentonville, drove them in, charged the reserve, and drove everything across Milford Creek; found the enemy still occupying his works. After a brisk and spirited but fruitless attempt to dislodge him, fell back to Allen's Cross-Roads.

On the evening of the 25th I collected everything I had in camp but a light camp guard and moved to that point. On the morning of the 26th I moved my whole command (effective strength, 76 officers and 1,053 enlisted men) to the north side of Milford Creek, attacked the enemy in his works at daylight, made such disposition of my force as to attack him on his right flank and front, supporting the attack by a vigorous fire from my artillery; did severe damage to the enemy's works, but failed to dislodge him for want of adequate force covering his entire line of fortifications. I kept him closely holed during the day, having received dispatch from General Torbert that Colonel Kidd's brigade had been sent up the Powell's Big Fort Valley passage to co-operate with me by striking the enemy's rear. I held the enemy in his works awaiting report from Colonel Kidd, which I received by Captain Warner about 12.30 p.m,. stating that Colonel K. had been misled, lost the road, and when he (Captain W.) left Colonel K.'s command, it was at least three miles north of McCoy's Ford, and about moving up into the mountain to open communication with me by signal. Later in the day I received Colonel K.'s second dispatch, saying that he had been ordered to reach the flank or rear of the enemy on my front, that he found the pass so obstructed that he could not reach me in time to accomplish anything, and had gone back to camp. In obedience to orders from headquarters Cavalry Corps, I returned with my command to Guard Hill at 10 p.m. 26th. On my leaving Milford the enemy developed his whole force in his works, but did not follow my command.

The country through which I have passed and in which I have operated has been left in such a condition as to barely leave subsistence for the inhabitants. The property destroyed, viz, grain, forage, flouring mills, tanneries, blast furnaces, &c., and stock driven off, has inflicted a severe blow on the enemy. The money value of this property could not have been less than $3,000,000. There is still considerable forage and stock in the valley, east of the Blue Ridge, adjacent to the headquarters of the Rappahannock.

My thanks are due to my present brigade commanders, Cols. H. Capehart, First Virginia Cavalry and A. S. Moore, Eighth Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, for their cheerful obedience and promptness in the execution of all orders; and especially are my thanks due to the soldiery in the division, who have been called upon the labor incessantly since the 1st of May, often barefooted, bareheaded, and ragged and lousy for lack of clothing and time to keep themselves clean, all of which has been borne by them without a murmur.

I have the honor to report that during the operations of my command since under my immediate control, I have endeavored to execute all orders from headquarters promptly and to the letter, fearless and regardless of rebel consequences. On the 5th and 13th instant it became my duty, though painful and repugnant to my own feelings, to order the execution of three Confederate bushwhackers, in retaliation for two Union soldiers murdered by guerrillas, believing it to be the only means of protection to our soldiers against the operations of all such illegal and outlawed bands of horse-thieves and murderers, recognized and supported by rebel authorities, for which I have been threatened by the Richmond press. But by this I cannot be intimi-