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is no force reported in the country visited, but there are many soldiers of the Southern army on furloughs and "horse details." The party brought in a prisoner belonging to the Second Virginia Cavalry and two horses. Two escaped prisoners, one of the First United States and the other of the First New York Dragoons, came in here day before yesterday. They report that Mosby on Sunday morning last attacked the wagon train of the First Cavalry Division and Sixth Corps, guarded by a strong force of infantry, on the other side of Snicker's Gap, capturing over 400 mules, 180 prisoners, 300 head of cattle, and burned over 100 wagons. These men state that they were present at the attack and afterward escaped from the enemy. Colonel Lazelle left here yesterday at 10 a. m. with all of the Sixteenth New York that could be got together. The party are provided with three and a half days' rations and forage.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Colonel Thirteenth New York Volunteer Cavalry, Comdg. Camp.

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Clifton, Va., August 18, 1864-2.45 p. m.

Brevet Major-General EMORY,

Commanding Nineteenth Army Corps:

GENERAL: The major general commanding directs that you move your command without delay via Charlestown pike, and take up a position on the left-hand side of the pike, near Mrs. Frame's, on north fork of Bullskin Run.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Lieutenant-Colonel and Chief of Staff.

General MERRITT:

August 18, 1864—6 p. m.

DEAR GENERAL: I did intend to come down to see you, but General Sheridan wishes me to go down to Charlestown with him. This is the second time to-day that I have been here from Summit Point. General Wilson's division, or the main body, is at Summit Point, one regiment at Middleway, one regiment at the crossing of Summit Point road and Opequon Creek, and holding down to the road from Summit Point to Berryville as far as where the road turns off to go to Rippon. Breckinridge's corps made me leave Winchester yesterday evening, but I had not the First Division by a long shot. I had about 700 infantry, and some of it was captured. I will tell you about it when I see you. Send a company to Charlestown at daylight in the morning to bring back dispatches.

Yours, &c.,

Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Chief of Cavalry,



August 18, 1864-3.30 p.m.

General W. MERRITT,

Commanding First Cavalry Division: GENERAL: I this a. m. sent a squadron of Ninth New York with orders to strike the Berryville and Winchester pike near the Opequon, communicate with Colonel Lowell, and thence return to the left of my lines, sending scouts to all elevated points where a view could be obtained of the country beyond. The squadron has just returned after communicating with Colonel Lowell and carrying out the other instructions. No enemy could be seen, although views were obtained of miles of the country in front. The Second Cavalry were met establishing a line of vedettes from my right to Lowell's left. I have just made a tour of my lines and found everything quiet.

Very respectfully, yours,

THOS. C. DEVIN, Colonel, Commanding Brigade.


Brigadier-General MERRITT,

Commanding First Division:

August 18, 1864.

GENERAL: The colonel fell back about one mile. No position here for artillery. The enemy is quiet; no firing. Some cavalry and infantry. It appears as if they were reconnoitering. The picket-line of Colonel Lowell has not yet succeeded to connect with General Wilson's. The colonel gave orders for the battery to halt.

N. B.-I went ahead of the artillery.
Very respectfully,

EDW. MYERS, Lieutenant and Aide-de-Camp.

Summit Point, Va., August 18, 1864.

General WILSON,

Commanding Third Division:

GENERAL: The chief of cavalry directs that you make dispositions to hold the crossing of the Opequon Creek from Summit Point. The regi ment now at the forks of the road at the church be sent to that point. Very respectfully,

M. A. RENO, Captain and Chief of Staff.

Frequent reports must be made from this regiment.


Captain RENO,

Chief of Staff:

August 18, 1864-9 a. m.

CAPTAIN: A Scout has just reached here from General Averell's command by way of Smithfield, from which place he was sent by Captain

McNulty, Twenty-second Pennsylvania Cavalry, with directions to report that General Averell had left Martinsburg this morning, marching to the Shepherdstown road and to within about seven miles of Smithfield, when he met a scouting party going toward Shepherdstown, and immediately turned about his command and marched in the same direction on the Shepherdstown turnpike. Lieutenant-colonel commanding Fifth New York Cavalry has posted his regiment on the Opequon, and reports that a short distance before arriving there he met about twenty rebel cavalry and drove them across the stream. Latest account from him is 5 p. m., at which time there was no apparent indication of the enemy's advancing in this direction. A squadron sent out by General Chapman has just returned, having thoroughly scouted the country between the Opequon and Martinsburg pike, and reports no evidence of the enemy except a few small scouting parties; none of the rebel forces have passed toward Martinsburg, but the commanding officer of this squadron learned of a Quaker farmer that they had been passing in force from Winchester toward Berryville. Colonel Moore, commanding Twenty-second New York Cavalry, at Smithfield, reports that this afternoon two men of the Fifth New York Cavalry, who had remained in Winchester last night came into his camp this evening, having traveled toward Martinsburg on the pike and reached him by striking across the country. They report no force of the enemy in Winchester, but that the troops which were engaged with my division yesterday afternoon had moved toward Berryville. Two officers at about 7 p. m. passed through this place looking for General Torbert's headquarters. They reported that Lowell had been attacked this p. m. and driven toward Berryville. In view of all these facts it seems quite clear that the enemy has directed his movements upon Berryville, and I have therefore directed General McIntosh to look for them in that quarter and to open communication with General Merritt. As soon as anything of importance is learned from that quarter I will communicate it.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. H. WILSON, Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.


Brigadier-General MCINTOSH,

Commanding First Brigade:

August 18, 1864.

GENERAL: It is reported that Colonel Lowell, commanding brigade, has been driven across the Opequon on the left, and it is supposed that the enemy are now this side the creek. The general commanding directs that you open communication with General Merritt at Berryville to ascertain the correctness of this report, and also that you send word to Colonel Hammond informing him of the above, with directions, if possible, to find out himself. The general desires to hear from Colonel Hammond as soon as possible.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

L. SIEBERT, Assistant Adjutant-General.


Summit Point, August 18, 1864-10.15 a. m.

Brigadier-General MCINTOSH,

Commanding First Brigade:

GENERAL: According to directions of the chief of cavalry, if you have not already done so, you will without delay strengthen your picket at the stone church on the road over which we advanced this morning, to a full regiment, under a good and responsible officer, and will advance it to the crossing of the Opequon Creek. Having arrived there it will post itself in a most advantageous manner for the purpose of holding that place. The commanding officer will keep pickets out well beyond the crossing and be instructed to communicate frequently with these headquarters; he must also hold his position as long as possible.

By command of Brigadier-General Wilson:


L. SIEBERT, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Washington, August 18, 1864.

Harper's Ferry, Va.:

The Secretary of War directs that you take and hand over to E. L. Wentz six of the prominent citizen rebels at Harper's Ferry who guided the raiders in their late expeditions. They are to be held as hostages for six negroes taken by the rebels from the railroad force. Report receipt and execution of this order.

General MEIGS,

E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

HARPER'S FERRY, August 18, 1864.
(Received 3 p. m.)


Your telegram received. Mosby attacked the wagon train en route for the front at or near Berryville, eighteen miles from this depot, on the morning of the 13th instant. Captured and burned 50 wagons and ran off about 350 mules. The wagons were principally loaded with forage, subsistence, and regimental property of the First Cavalry Division.


Brig. Gen. J. D. STEVENSON:

R. S. GARDNER, Assistant Quartermaster.

MARTINSBURG, August 18, 1864.
(Received 4 a. m.)

Our forces left Winchester last night. Enemy there in strong force reported by General Torbert. Please send following dispatch to General Sheridan:

Reno reports enemy in strong force at Winchester 8 a. m. yesterday. Will send my train to Williamsport and wait till I see enemy. Please send three signal officers

to Williamsport, and with directions for one to establish a station at Fairview. Let a station be established on Maryland Heights. I would suggest that a brigade of cavalry be sent to Shepherdstown, with some artillery.




[AUGUST 18, 1864.-For Forsyth to Averell, directing movements of Averell's command to north side of the Potomac, &c., see p. 501.]

Brigadier-General AVERELL:

HARPER'S FERRY, August 18, 1864.

Major-General Sheridan directs [me] to notify you that our cavalry at Winchester had to fall back to Summit Point, and orders that you move your command to the north side of the Potomac, if necessary, and cover the country from Sharpsburg to Williamsport. Answer.




MARTINSBURG, August 18, 1864.

Nothing seen or heard of the enemy in Back Creek Valley, Bunker Hill, or Gerrardstown. Please send this to General Sheridan. WM. W. AVERELL,


Brigadier-General DUFFIE,

Charlestown, W. Va.:

Please forward this to General Sheridan.


Shepherdstown, August 18, 1864.

Brig. Gen. J. D. STEVENSON:

GENERAL: Please communicate the following to General Sheridan as promptly as possible and be good enough to send me his reply:

Received an order from Reno this morning to fall back to Charlestown. On the way received a communication from General Torbert requesting me to occupy Smithfield and Bunker Hill. When near Leetown received dispatch from General Sheridan to cross the Potomac, if necessary, and cover the river from Williamsport to Shepherdstown. My command is now near Shepherdstown, with pickets at Martinsburg, Williamson's Cross-Roads, and Kearneysville, Gerrardstown, Bunker Hill, and Leetown. I should be glad to be informed of the condition of affairs in front in order to determine my course.


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