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142 Series I Volume XXIX-I Serial 48 - Bristoe, Mine Run Part I

Page 142 OPERATIONS IN N.C., VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XLI.

to the turnpike road between Madison Court-House and Gordonsville, followed by my battery and the Fifth New York. On approaching the turnpike the advance of the Second New York Cavalry struck the enemy's column moving toward Gordonsville. They were evidently aware of our approach, as we were instantly opened on by two pieces of artillery, and found skirmishers dismounted and hidden by the side of the road. Our position was very unfortunate in a dense wood, where no formation was practicable.

The Second New York penetrated as far as the turnpike road, when I received orders from the general commanding division to hold my ground as long as practicable, to give time for withdrawing the artillery and the rest of the command to a more favorable position. The Second New York, though fighting against far superior numbers and unable to act in concert on account of the ground, fought very gallantly and did all that was required from them. They fell back gradually, fighting all the time, until the whole of the battery and the Fifth New York had crossed the river again and taken position on the other side. Their loss was, however, very heavy, and we have to mourn over many gallant officers and brave men who feel into the hands of the enemy. Major McIrvin, Captain Hasty, and Lieutenants Jones and Temple, with 69 brave men, fell into the hands of the enemy.

During this skirmish the First [West] Virginia Cavalry, which had been sent to a ford lower down the river, engaged a force of the enemy and took 17 prisoners. I formed my command on the south bank of the Rapidan, and remained there in support of the second brigade while they were engaged. In the evening I again crossed the river; moved toward Barnett's Ford. My total loss is 1 killed and 10 wounded, 4 officers and 69 men missing.

Respectfully submitted.

H. E. DAVIES, Jr.,

Brigadier-General, Commanding First Brigade.

Captain ESTES,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

No. 3. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Peter Stagg, First Michigan Cavalry, Second Brigade.

Near Stevensburg, Va., September 24, 1863.

LIEUTENANT: I would respectfully report that my regiment accompanied the division on the expedition across the Rapidan River without meeting the enemy until the 23rd instant, when, retiring in the direction of Culpeper Court-House, being assigned to cover the rear of the column, having arrived at Good Hope Church, where the column rested for breakfast, my pickets, a mile in the rear, reported the enemy advancing in heavy force, and as the column moved off they made an attempt to cut off my rear guard. The enemy pressed my rear closely until the column halted at the ford on Robertson's River, where they attacked it vigorously.

At this point I was informed that the column would halt an hour, and ordered to hold the enemy in check, and if necessary re-enforcements would be sent me. The enemy pressing me very hard, I made

Page 142 OPERATIONS IN N.C., VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XLI.