Page:A memoir of the last year of the War of Independence, in the Confederate States of America.djvu/86
8i OPERATIONS IN THE LOWER TALLEY.
two miles, I reached an elevated position from which the en- emy's line was visible, and within artillery range of it. I at first thought that I had reached his right flank, and was about making arrangements to attack it, when casting my eye to my left, I discovered, as far as the eye could reach with the aid of field glasses, a line extending towards Summit Point. The position the enemy occupied was a strong one, and he was busily engaged fortifying it, having already made considerable progress. It was not until I had had this view that 1 re- alized the size of the enemy's force, and as I discovered that his line was too long for me to get around his flank, and the position was too strong to attack in front, I returned and in- formed General Anderson of the condition of things. After consultation with him, we thought it not advisable to attack the enemy in his entrenched lines, and we determined to move our forces back to the west side of the Opequon, and see if he would not move out of his works. The waggon trains were sent back early next morning (the 5th) towards Winchester, and, about an hour by sun, Kershaw's division, whose place had been taken by one of my divisions, moved towards the same point. About two o'clock in the afternoon my troops were withdrawn, and moved back to Stephenson's depot. This withdrawal was made while the skirmishers were in close proximity and firing at each other; yet there was no effort on the part of the enemy to molest us. Just as my front division (Rodes') reached Stephenson's depot, it met, and drove back, and pursued for some distance, Averill's cavalry, which was forcing, towards Winchester, that part of our cavalry which had been waiching the Martinsburg road.
It was quiet on the 6th, but on the 7th the enemy's cavalry made demonstrations on the Martinsburg Road, and the Ope- quon at several points and was repulsed.
On the 8th it was quiet again, but on the dth a detachment of the enemy's cavalry came to the Opequon below Brucetown, burned some mills, and retreated before a division of infantry sent out to meet it.
On the 10th, my infantry moved by Bunker Hill to Darkes