it was relieved and my own regiment and rejoin the brigade. I communicated the order to Colonel Atkinson immediately, and as soon as he was relieved and had joined me with his regiment (which was about 10 p. M.), I marched both regiments and reported, with the orders I had received, to Brigadier-General Gordon.
I am, major, yours, very respectfully,
C. A. EVANS,
[Major J. W. DANIEL.]
DECEMBER 6, 1863.-Reconnaissance to Woodville, Va.
Report of Colonel Thomas C. Devin, Sixth New York Cavalry, commanding brigade.
HDQRS. SECOND BRIGADE, FIRST CAVALRY DIVISION,
December 6, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that at 12 m. this day, in pursuance of orders, I disaptched Captain Corrigan, with thirty-two men of Ninth New York Cavalry, accompanied by Lieutenant Cating, of my staff, with orders to proceed in the direction of Woodville and ascertain whether any force was or had been moving in the direction of that place or Sperryville. The party proceeded up the Sperryville pike to Hazel River, crossing at the covered bridge; thence to the left to State Mills; thence to Mount Lebanon Church; thence to Woodville. On the road Lieutenant Cating pursued and captured one private of the Sixth Virginia Cavalry, who stated that there were forty of the enemy in Woodville. The party charged in the town, but found no one there; nor had there been any except one or two, who fled on the approach of the party. At this place they picked up a negro just from Sperryville, who stated that no force was or had been there except the squadron of cavalry that has been there constantly. He states that there is a guerrilla force about one mile and a half from Woodville, who have a number of Union prisoners and horses. As it was now dark, the party were obliged to return. The inhabitants all stated that tehre was no force nearer than the Little Forks, near the meeting-house on the road from Madison Court-House to Sperryville. The party, on their return on the pike, found that the bushwhackers had been busy in their rear and had torn up the bridge over the run at Little Boston and the covered bridge over Hazel River. At both places they were attacked from the woods on each side and on the hill above the road, which passes through a defile, but the darkness favored them as well as the enemy, whose ammunition also seemed poor. The party succeeded in fording the river, losing but one horse killed. Not a man was hurt. The party exceeded their orders in going to a distance which precluded their return before dark, but their object was praiseworthy (although its execution was attended with great danger), as, without reaching Woodville, from the nature of the country and roads, the reconnaissance would not have been complete, as it now certainly is, and Captain Corrigan and Lieutenant Cating are entitled to great credit for their coolness and perseverance. Not a horse was blown, although the party marched thirty-two miles from 12 m. until 10 p. M.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THOS. C. DEVIN,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
Captain T. C. BACON, Assistant Adjutant-General.
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