War of the Rebellion: Serial 095 Page 0473 Chapter LVIII. EXPEDITION TO WEST POINT, VA.

Search Civil War Official Records

of whom I have every reason to believe are spies, from the fact of their leaving Yorktown the same night of the expedition, running the blockade in a small boat, and undoubtedly informed the enemy of our approach. (The fact of the gun-boat getting aground afforded them ample time to warn Captain Richardson and others of our supposed intentions.)

Before leaving West Point I received information in regard to important movement of the enemy, which I have heretofore communicated. Having accomplished all that could be done here the force crossed the river and burned a store-house and barn, containing at least 15,000 bushels of grain and 1,000 pounds of bacon, the property of Beverly Anderson, a contractor for the so-called Confederate Government. We then embarked and proceeded down the river to Queen's Creek, hoping thus to deceive the enemy in regard to our intended movements for that night. Soon as darkness would hide our movements the vessel moved up the river until nearly opposite the residence of Andrew Richardson, where the wedding was to take place and where I expected to find Captain Theodore Richardson, the murdered of the oysterman. After considerable difficulty we succeeded in landing (it being dark and rainy), and proceeded five miles to Andrew Richardson's house (skirmishing the woods and arresting two citizens on the way), which I immediately ordered to be surrounded. As soon as this was accomplished I demanded admittance; upon being refused forced my way into the house, making a complete surprise. Shots were, however, fired by the occupants, in returning which I wounded Richardson. Searched thoroughly the premises, and finding nothing more I retraced my way to the landing, arriving there about daybreak; crossed the river and burned the buildings from which the decoy signal was shown and from which the oystermen were fired into; also a barn containing about 8,000 bushels of grain. The force went on board the gun-boat; landed on the opposite shore and eight miles below the last point of embarkation. I here burned the residence of Captain Richardson, consisting of two dwellings, barn, and a store, all his household furniture, and 2,000 bushels of grain, his family having made their escape while the gun-boat was aground.

Having executed my orders as far as possible, I again embarked and returned to Yorktown. Reported to Lieutenant-Colonel Mulcahy, who ordered me to report to brigadier-general commanding post. The persons arrested are - Andrew Richardson (whom I left wounded in charge of surgeon, gun-boat Mystic), Thomas Davis, E. W. Powells, and James Gwin (whom I had at first suspected but I found nothing against), Richard Pippin (who has promised to assist me in apprehending Richardson and other guerrillas), J. W. and Harley Cole (the suspected spies found at West Point). The wedding spoken of is to take place Thursday, March 2, at Tabernacle Church. It is reported that there will be a party of guerrillas attending.

Hoping I may have the opportunity of again attempting the arrest of this noted band of guerrillas, I remain, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Captain Company M, Sixteenth New York Volunteer Artillery.

Brigadier-General LUDLOW,

Commanding Post.