Today in History:

35 Series I Volume XII-II Serial 16 - Second Manassas Part II


much service, as should be expected from cavalry. The corps of Heintzelman had reached Warrenton Junction, but it was without wagons, without artillery, with only 40 rounds of ammunition to the man, and without even horses for the general and field officers. The corps of Porter had also reached Warrenton Junction with a very small supply of provisions and but 40 rounds of ammunition for each man.

On the morning of the 27th, in accordance with the purpose previously set forth, I directed McDowell to move forward rapidly on Gainesville, by the Warrenton turnpike, with his own corps and Sigel's and the division of Reynolds, so as to reach that point during the night. I directed General Reno, with his corps, followed by Kearny's division, of Heintzelman's corps, to move rapidly on Greenwich, so as to reach there that night, to communicate at once with General McDowell, and to support him in any operations against the enemy in the vicinity of Gainesville. I moved forward along the railroad toward Manassas Junction with Hooker's division, of Heintzelman's corps, leaving orders for General Porter to remain with his corps at Warrenton Junction until relieved by General Banks, who was marching to that place from Fayetteville, and, as soon as he was relieved, to push forward also in the direction of Gainesville, where at that time I expected the main collision with the enemy would occur.

The army trains of all the corps I instructed to take the road to Warrenton Junction and follow in the rear of Hooker's division toward Manassas Junction, so that the road pursued by the trains was entirely covered from any possible interruption by the enemy.

On the afternoon of the 27th a severe engagement occurred between Hooker's division and Ewell's division, of Jackson's forces. The action commenced about 4 miles west of Bristoe Station. Ewell was driven back along the railroad, but still confronted Hooker at dark along to the banks of Broad Run, immediately in front of Bristoe Station, at which point I arrived at sunset. The loss in this engagement was about 300 killed and wounded on each side. The enemy left his dead, many of his wounded, and much of his baggage on the field of battle.

The railroad had been torn up and the bridges burned in several places between Bristoe Station and Warrenton Junction. I accordingly directed Major-General Banks to cover the railroad trains at Warrenton Junction until General Porter'c corps had marched from that place, and then to run back the trains as far as practicable, and, covering them with his troops, to repair the bridges as fast as possible. I also directed Captain Merrill, of the Engineers, with a considerable force, to repair the railroad track and bridges as far as possible in the direction of Bristoe Station. The road was accordingly put in order from Warrenton Junction to Kettle Run during the 27th, and the trains run back to that point early next day.

At dark on the 27th General Hooker reported to me that his ammunition was nearly exhausted, and that he had but about 5 rounds to the man left. I had by that time become conscious that the whole force under Jackson, consisting of his own, A. P. Hill's, and Ewell's divisions, was south of the Warrenton turnpike and in the immediate neighborhood of Manassas Junction. McDowell reached his position during the night of the 27th, as did also Kearny and Reno, and it was clear on that night that we had interposed completely between Jackson and the main body of the enemy, which was still west of the Bull Run range and in the neighborhood of White Plains. Thinking it altogether likely that Jackson would mass his whole force and attempt to turn our right at Bristoe Station, and knowing that Hooker, for