Clement Anselm Evans.

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ahominy at Jones' bridge and below. ' ' On the morning
of the 7th, he says: "Grant is now nearly ready to strike
for the James ; and he means to stay here but a short
time," meaning at Cold Harbor. Again on the Sth:
"Two officers of General Grant's staff are now with Gen-
eral Butler, making arrangements for the movement of
this army to Bermuda Hundred. They ought to be back
to-morrow. Possibly the march may begin to-morrow
night." On the afternoon of the 9th, he reported:
"Our engineers, under General Barnard, are now at
work on an inner line of intrenchments to cover the
withdrawal of the army from this position. Very prob-
ably this movement will begin to-morrow night. ' ' Again,
on the morning of the 10th, Dana wrote: "General Grant
is waiting for the report of Lieutenant -Colonel Comstock
and Lieutenant-Colonel Porter, the officers sent Tuesday
to General Butler, before deciding as to movement of the
army. Possibly it may be necessary to send an army
corps to General Butler, in order to make his position
perfectly safe, while this army is moving to James river,
and Lee is temporarily released from the danger of being
attacked. . . . General Grant does not expect to be able
to cross the Chickahominy higher than Long Bridge, but
he will try to get over at Bottom's bridge and secure a
road connected with that crossing." On the morning of
the 1 2th, Dana reported the return of the messengers from
Butler, and wrote: "Army moves to-night after dark.
... If not opposed by enemy in force, column will
strike James river opposite Bermuda Hundred. If
resisted, they will move to point opposite Fort Pow-
hatan. General Butler has been ordered to throw a
bridge and corduroy across the marsh at the latter place. "



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 475

Lee discovered, at daybreak of the 13th, that Grant had
left his front. After advancing his skirmishers for
nearly two miles, without finding the enemy, he moved
his army to conform to Grant's movement, sending
Anderson and Hill to the right to cover his front from
White Oak swamp to Malvern hill, and Hoke to Peters-
burg, to anticipate Grant's next attack. His whole force
north of the James, when Grant retreated, was less than
30,000 men. On the 14th, the Federal cavalry came to
Malvern hill, to make a demonstration to cover Grant's
crossing the James. Gen. W. H. F. Lee easily drove
these back, while a brigade of infantry, supporting the
cavalry at Smith's store, drove the enemy from that point.

On the i6th of June, Lee sent the divisions of Pickett
and Field across the James, and on the 17th these drove
Butler from a portion of Beauregard's old line, which he
held in front of Bermuda Hundred. A cheerful dispatch
from Lee reads: "We tried very hard to stop Pickett's
men from capturing the breastworks of the enemy, but
couldn't do it." The spirit of the Confederate army,
and of its leader, at this time, could not well have
been better expressed.

Satisfied that Grant would make no further attacks
north of the James, but would again essay to make one
in force on the south and against Petersburg, from the
stronghold which he had secured south of the Appomat-
tox to fall back upon in case of disaster, Lee sent the rest
of his army across the James, and, on the afternoon of the
1 8th of June, joined Beauregard, who, from the 15th to
the 1 8th, with some 10,000 men, had beaten back numer-
ous assaults of nearly half of Grant's army, decreasing
his numbers by fully 10,000 men during four days.
These, added to those lost between the Rapidan and the
James, made Grant's aggregate loss up to June i8th,
nearly 65,000 men, which had been made good by the
addition of 55,000 reinforcements to his ranks.

The armies of the Potomac and the James, and that of
Northern Virginia, under their respective generals com-
manding, now confronted each other, south of the James,
and the long and memorable siege of Petersburg began.
Grant, after Butler's repulse of the i8th, wrote to Meade,
•giving the keynote of his future intentions: "Now we
will rest the men and use the spade for their protection,
-until a vein can be struck."



CHAPTER XXVIII.

EARLY'S LYNCHBURG AND VALLEY CAMPAIGNS.

CONSIDERING the great disparity offerees engaged
and the results accomplished, the Shenandoah
Valley campaigns of 1864, by Lieut. -Gen. Jubal
Anderson Early against the forces of Gen. David
Hunter at and beyond Lynchburg, including the advance
on Washington and the subsequent numerous conten-
tions with the large army commanded by General Sheri-
dan, were among the most remarkable and brilliant of
the Confederate war in Virginia and Maryland. Unfor-
tunately the record of these campaigns, as officially pub-
lished, is a very meager one, as scarcely any reports con-
cerning its operations were sent in to the Confederate gov-
ernment, and consequently few were found atoong the
archives that were captured by the Federal forces during
the retreat from Richmond, and since so impartially
published. The Confederate portion of the story of these
campaigns is mainly told by the maps and accompanying
brief report and personal diary of the writer of this vol-
ume, which were furnished to the United States war
department and are published in serial No. go of the War
Records of the Union and Confederate armies, and in
part 17 of the great Atlas accompanying these records.
Aided by these, General Early wrote and published his
brief, truth-telling narrative of the evenfs of these cam-
paigns. The Federal reports of these campaigns, as pub-
lished in the Official Records, are voluminous, and num-
bers of the officers connected with the portion of the
Federal army that Early contended with, have published
narratives and magazine articles concerning these unique
and but little understood campaigns.

The Second corps of the army of Northern Virginia,
after participating in all the battles and engagements of
the Wilderness campaign, from the 3d of May until the
8th of June, 1864, was resting, in reserve, in a camp to
the west of Gaines' mill, until the morning of the 13th

476



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 477

, of June. Just preceding this date, two Federal armies —
one under Hunter, coming up the Shenandoah valley, and
' another, under Crook, coming from the Kanawha from the
, west by way of the White Sulphur Springs — had made a
'junction at Staunton and moved up the valley to Lex-
ington. Hunter had, on the 5 th of June, encountered
and defeated a small Confederate force, under Jones and
, Imboden, at Piedmont, a hamlet some fourteen miles
, northeast of Staunton, on the road leading to Port Repub-
lic. The force that was there defeated fell back to and
held Rockfish gap, of~±ha^lue ridge, where the Virginia
Central railroad runs through a tunnel, and thus diverted
Hunter's army from going in that direction toward Rich-
mond to join Grant, and decided him to follow up the Valley
to Lexington, -vj^here he had skirmishes -vyith the cadets of
the Virginia military institute and with a small force of
Confederates that had fallen back as he advanced.
Thence, after burning the Virginia military institute and
committing other deeds of barbaric vandalism, he moved
on to Buchanan, where he had another skirmish, June
14th, after which he turned across the Blue ridge toward
Lynchburg, in front of which he appeared on the 17 th of
June ; thus menacing not only Lee's communications with
one of his principal bases of supplies, but also the rear of
his army.

On the 13th of June, Lieut. -Gen. Jubal A. Early,
who had been promoted and put in command of the Sec-
ond corps, was detached from the army of Northern Vir-
ginia, and marched, at 3 a. m. , by way of the Mountain
road, to Auburn mills, on the South Anna, where he
encamped that night. On the 14th, he marched to Gar-
diner's cross roads; on the isth to the vicinity of Trevil-
ian's, and on the i6th to the vicinity of Charlottesville.
Thence, on the 17th, a portion of his command was taken
by the trains of the Orange & Alexandria railroad to
L3mchburg, and a portion of it marched to North Garden
depot, whence, later, it was carried to Lynchburg by rail.
Arriving at Lynchburg with Ramseur's and Gordon's
divisions at i p. m., of the 17th, Early at once marched
out on the Salem road, and taking command, put his men
in position with those of General Breckinridge's com-
mand, consisting of Wharton's division of infantry,
King's artillery, and Jackson's, Imboden's, McCausland's
and Jones' brigades of cavalry, which he found holding



478 CONFEDERA TE MILITARY HISTORY.

and constructing a line of defenses in front of that city.

On the 1 8th, Rodes' division arrived, brought by rail
from North Garden. Early, his command now concen-
trated, formed a line of battle some three miles west
and in front of Lynchburg; in the afternoon met and
repulsed Hunter's attack, and compelled him to retreat
that night by the Salem road. The next morning the
"army of the Valley District, " which the Second corps
had again become, promptly pursued Hunter, over a hot
and dusty road, and attacked his rear in a skirmish at
Liberty, and there encamped for the night. On the 20th,
Early continued the pursuit to the entrance to Buford's
gap, where he had another skirmish with Hunter's rear
guard. From Liberty he had sent most of his cavalry
across the Blue ridge, by way of the Peaks gap, to Bu-
chanan, to hold the Valley and prevent Hunter from
retreating in the direction of Lexington. This force
turned fromBuchanan toward Salem, and was ready to fall
on Hunter's right flank and co-operate with Early's pur-
suit, on the 2 1 St, to Big Lick, and then across to Hanging
Rock, a gap in the North mountains, on the Salem and
Sweet Springs turnpike. There it struck the flank of
Hunter's retreat, which had been expedited by Imbo-
den's cavalry, which had marched to the left and crossed
the Blue ridge southwest of Buford's gap and fallen upon
Hunter's rear and left flank at Big Lick (now Roanoke)
and forced him in rapid retreat through Salem, harass-
ing and damaging his rear and capturing a portion of his
train at Hanging Rock, as he escaped into the mountains
west of the Valley. Imboden followed the rear of Hunt-
er's retreating army across to New Castle, on the 21st
and 2 2d. Ransom's cavalry, the command that had
marched by way of Buchanan, attacked Hunter's line of
retreat at 11 a. m. of the 21st, at Hanging Rock, and also
in the vicinity of Salem, aiding Imboden in creating
dismay in the ranks of the baffled and retreating army at
the latter place; Early's strategy having attacked it in
the rear and on both flanks at the same time.

The night of the 21st, the Valley army encamped be-
tween Big Lick and Hanging Rock, and there it remained
on the 22d, except Ramseur's division, which moved east-
ward to the vicinity of Botetourt Springs, where head-
quarters were established, while Ransom's cavalry
marched northward to the vicinity of Fincastle.



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 479

Hunter's army now disposed of and sent in disastrous
defeat through the mountains to the Kanawha, and the
Valley of Virginia now cleared of the enemy, Early
started on June 23d, by easy marches, for Staunton,
whither he had been ordered by Lee, there to await further
instructions. He encamped the night of the 23d at Bu-
chanan, and that of the 24th at Buffalo creek. On the 2Sth,
reaching Lexington, he divided his command ; one portion
followed the Middlebrook road and encamped at Browns-
burg, and the other the Greenville road and encamped at
Midway, both of these roads leading to Staunton. A
portion of the army marched to Middlebrook on the 2Sth.
Ransom's cavalry had proceeded from Fincastle across
to Clifton Forge, to intercept a possible turning of Hunter
to the eastward, and thence, by way of Lucy Salina fur-
nace, across the North mountain, and encamped at Col-
lierstown on the 24th, then had marched to Middlebrook
for the night of the 2Sth, thus covering widely the flank
and front of the infantry movement against any possible
attack by a force of the enemy coming in by any of the
great highways leading from the west to Early's line of
march. On the 26th, the cavalry continued along the
highway on the western side of the Shenandoah valley
and encamped near Buffalo gap and Churchville, covering
the two great highways leading from Staunton toward
the west and northwest. The same day the infantry
reached Staunton, where it rested and refitted during
_the 27th.

Having received instructions from General Lee to
march down the Shenandoah valley and make demon-
strations toward Washington, General Early lost no time
in obeying his orders, and on the 28th, took up his line of
march down the Valley turnpike, with most of his com-
mand, and encamping that night near North river, while
the remainder of his infantry, taking the Keezletown
road at Mt. Sidney, encamped on the south bank of the
same North river at Rockland mills. The cavalry fol-
lowed the back road parallel to and on the left of the
infantry advance. On the 29th, a long march was made,
through Harrisonburg and Keezletown, to Sparta, where
the command was reunited and encamped.

The troops, animated by the familiar scenes of the
Shenandoah valley and inspired by these with the re-
membrance of their famous exploits under Stonewall



480 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

Jackson, marched briskly forward, on the 30th, through
New Market and Mt. Jackson, to the vicinity of Hawkins-
town. The next day, July ist, with like alacrity, the
march was continued, through Edenburg, Woodstock
and Maurertown, to a camp near Fisher's hill. On the
2d, the march was through Strasburg, Middletown and
Newtown, to the Opequan at Bartonsville ; all places that
recalled glorious victories. On the 3d, a long march car-
ried Early's men through grand old Winchester, with its
ever zealous and patriotic people, all of whom that were
not in the army, cheering, meeting and welcoming the
passing soldiery. A portion of the command went to
Martinsburg and another portion to Leetown, on the way
to Harper's Ferry. Part of the cavalry advanced from
Winchester, by way of the Back Creek valley, to North
Mountain depot, of the Baltimore & Ohio railroad, cut
off the retreat of a body of the enemy at Martinsburg,
and protected the flank of the army moving in that direc-
tion ; while another portion led the advance to Leetown,
where it encountered the enemy's cavalry, and after a
severe engagement drove it through Kearneysville.

On the 4th of July, Ramseur's division marched, \>j way
of Flowing Springs and Brown's, to Halltown, and
Rodes' division to the same point by way of Charlestown.
This combined force drove the enemy from Halltown
and Bolivar heights, and took possession of the latter
with its skirmishers, the enemy shelling these from Mary-
land heights, where they had planted loo-pounder guns,
also from Fort Duncan, north of the Potomac, and from
works in front of Harper's Ferry. After dark the enemy
evacuated the latter place, and Early's skirmishers took
possession of it. The other divisions of the army marched
from Martinsburg to Duffield's, on the Baltimore & Ohio,
not far from Harper's Ferry, and the infantry was again
united in that vicinity. McCausland's brigades of cavalry
attacked North Mountain depot of the Baltimore & Ohio
early on the morning of the 4th, took 200 prisoners, and
then marched to Hainesville.

On the sth of July, Gordon's division crossed the Poto-
mac, at the familiar Boteler's ford, and then marched
down the river, on the Maryland side, and encamped near
the mouth of the historic Antietam. Vaughn, in com-
mand of Breckinridge's division (Breckinridge himself
commanding a corps which Early had formed from Breck-



LJJUUUl




CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 481

inridge's old division and Gordon's division), marched to
Sharpsburg and encamped on the famous battlefield.
McCausland advanced his cavalry to Shepherdstown,
"while Ramseur and Rodes spent the day at Harper's
Ferry. On the 6th, Gordon continued his march down
the Potomac to near Maryland heights, threatening the
Federals holding that formidable position; while Ram-
seur and Rodes marched to the vicinity of Sharpsburg,
leaving one brigade on guard at Harper's Ferry. The
cavalry advance marched to Boonsboro, at the foot of the
South mountain, while McCausland brought his force to
the Antietam in front of Sharpsburg.

On the 7th, Gordon drove in the enemy's outposts at
Fort Duncan and Maryland heights, and supported by
Wharton (Breckinridge's division), he engaged the enemy
to within 600 yards of these frowning and commanding
fortifications. Rodes, threatening the rear of these same
intrenched Federal forces, advanced to near Rohrersville,
while Ramseur marched to near Sharpsburg. Lewis'
brigade of Ramseur's division remained on Bolivar
lieights until late in the afternoon, when it rejoined him
at Sharpsburg by the usual route. McCausland marched
to Hagerstown, and there had an engagement with some
United States regular cavalry, which he forced to retreat.
The remainder of the cavalry marched across the mount-
ains to the vicinity of Frederick City, where it had a slight
engagement with the enemy's outposts.

On the 8th, Ramseur marched, by way of Boonsboro
and Middletown, to the summit of the Catoctin mountain,
Tvhere he found Early's cavalry advance in position, and
-where he encamped. Gordon and Wharton marched
from Rohrersville, by way of Fox's gap and Middletown,
to the foot of the Catoctin mountain ; while Rodes, from
Rohrersville, crossed the South mountain by Crampton's
gap and encamped near Jefferson, also at the foot of the
Catoctin mountain, but a few miles south from the camp
of the other divisions, and in position to meet any demon-
stration from the enemy's force left on Maryland heights.
McCausland marched all night, passed the Boonsboro
gap at daj'light and went on to Frederick City, where he
skirmished with the enemy, and then encamped in front
of the infantry at Middletown.

The battle of the Monocacy, a short and bloody battle,
was fought on the 9th of July. Ramseur, at an early
Va 31



482 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

hour of that morning, drove in the enemy's pickets,
near Frederick City, and followed them through that
town toward Monocacy Junction of the Baltimore &
Ohio, on the eastern side of Monocacy river, where a
Federal army, under Gen. Lew Wallace, occupied a strong
position, protected by two well-constructed block-houses,
one of them flanked by strong earthworks on a nearby
hill, its main force occupying a commanding plateau
extending southward from the block-houses and over-
looking the lovely valley of the Monocacy. Ramseur
promptly engaged the enemy in his front, skirmished
with them, and brought several batteries into position to
reply to those from the plateau that had opened on him.
Having reconnoitered the enemy's position. Early ordered
McCausland's brigade of cavalry, which had moved from
Middletown by way of Jefiferson, to cross the Monocacy,
below the enemy, and get upon his flank. This move-
ment was successful, and he quickly drove away the Fed-
eral cavalry and skirmished with its infantry. Gordon's
division soon followed McCausland, struck the enemy's
flank and drove it back in confusion, having turned its
works, to a second line, which he also broke and com-
pletely routed, pursuing them for some distance and cap-
turing many prisoners, until night closed the pursuit.
McCausland's brigade followed the enemy's cavalry to
Urbana, on the road to Washington city, and there had
an engagement with them, after which he fell back tO'
the Monocacy.

Rodes' division moved out on the road to Baltimore
and had a brief skirmish with Wallace's discomfited and
retreating army. Early's troops encamped on the bat-
tlefield, resting from their decisive, but dearly bought
victory. Gen. Bradley Johnson's brigade of cavalry,
formerly Jones', started on an expedition to the vicinity
of Baltimore, riding by way of Liberty, Unionville and
Westminster, then along the Western Maryland railroad
to Relay and to Gunpowder bridge, on the Philadelphia^
Wilmington & Baltimore railroad, which they destroyed;
detached parties visited other important points to the
north of Baltimore, and all returned, by way of Brooke-
ville, to the vicinity of Washington, where they rejoined
the main body on the 12 th.

On Sunday, the loth, the enemy retreated toward Bal-
timore. Early destroyed the iron bridge of the Balti-



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 483

more & Ohio railroad across the Monocacy, and the block-
hoiases at the junction, and, having buried his dead and
cared for his wounded, continued his march toward Wash-
ington City, by way of Urbana, with Gordon in front
and Ramseur in the rear, who had some skirmishing
with the enemy's cavalry, to near Gaithersburg, where
he encamped. McCausland's, in advance, drove Wilson's
cavalry contending with him to Rockville, where he en-
camped that night. On the nth, with Rodes in front,
Early advanced to Silver Spring, on the Seventh Street
turnpike, on the borders of the District of Columbia and
in sight of the dome of the capitol, where he engaged the
enemy's skirmishers and drove them into the fortifica-
tions surrounding the city. The day was intensely hot,
and the army much exhausted by its many long marches
and by the severe and sanguinary battle it had fought at
Monocacy. The forts and other works around Washing-
ton were found to be of a very formidable character, and
fully manned ; the whole surrounding country had been
cleared off, so that every line of advance was exposed to
the fire from the numerous forts and batteries that
crowned the heights surrounding the Federal city. Mc-
Causland's cavalry brigade, in advancing from Rockville,
took the Georgetown road, and had an engagement with
the Federal cavalry near Tennallytown, while Colonel
Mosby's command made a demonstration at the Chain
bridge, northwest of Washington, on the Virginia side of
thePotomac.

- General Early learned, from a reliable source, soon
after reaching the vicinity of Washington, that while his
unexpected arrival had created great alarm, large rein-
forcements, consisting of two corps from Grant's army,
were already beginning to arrive in Washington, by way
of the Potomac, so that very soon the force of veteran
soldiers in that city would be larger than his own. The
delay caused by the well-contested battle of Monocacy
had given the Federal authorities opportunity for bring-
ing forward these reinforcements, and had made it not only
inadvisable, but extremely hazardous for him to make an
assault upon the works and attempt to capture the city.
The 12th was spent in front of Washington, and Rodes'
division had a heavy skirmish with the enemy in the
afternoon on the Seventh Street turnpike, jn front of Silver
Spring, where Early had established his headquarters.



484 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

McCausland's cavalry was attacked on the Georgetown
road, and he was forced, by superior numbers, to retire
until infantry supports came to his relief.

At dark of the 1 2th of July, the trains were started to
the rear, with Wharton's division in front, and at 11 p. m.
the other divisions followed, with Ramseur in the rear,
McCausland falling back by the river road and thus
guarding the left flank of the march. Rockville was
reached by daylight of the 13 th, and Seneca creek at
about noon of that day, where the army halted and rested
until dark. McCausland marched to Edwards' ferry.
The enemy's cavalry followed the main body to Rockville
and attacked the rear guard, Jackson's brigade of cavalry,
but were handsomely repulsed. The march was contin-
ued during the night, by way of Poolesville, the army
reaching White's ford of the Potomac about midnight
and resting there until dawn of the 14th, when it crossed
the Potomac and went into camp on the Virginia side, on
the road leading to Leesburg. The cavalry crossed
into Virginia at Conrad's ferry, and then marched
to Edwards' ferry, where it had an engagement with
the Federal cavalry from the Maryland side.

The 15 th was spent in camp, while the trains and pris-
oners were sent toward the Valley, by way of Upperville
and Ashby's gap, convoyed by McCausland. The enemy
made demonstrations along the Potomac, shelling the cav-
alry guarding the fords. On the i6th, the army again
marched, by way of Leesburg and Purcellville, through
Snicker's gap of the Blue ridge, with Jackson's cavalry



Online LibraryClement Anselm EvansConfederate military history; a library of Confederate States history → online text (page 47 of 153)