Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 23.djvu/72
66 Southern Historical Society Papers.
fight until the flames enveloped the building and all of its occupants were destroyed. The firing of our artillery was excellent, every shot taking effect among the fleeing ebony horsemen. At a swift run, by sections, Branch's battery kept shot and shell in their midst as long as the fleeing cavalry could be reached.
The brigade held Suffolk all that day and the next. A heavy column was moved from Norfolk and Fortress Monroe to meet us, but, though we offered battle, no attack was made, and when we advanced, with Companies D and K of the Forty-ninth in the bri- gade front as skirmishers, the enemy fell back to the swamp. On the evening of the loth we returned, via South Quay and Murfee's Station, to Weldon.
On March 3oth we began our march from Weldon by way of Murfreesboro and Winton, the latter place having been totally destroyed by the Federals in one of their raids, to Harrellsville, in Bertie county.
At this place, Coleraine, and on the Chowan and beautiful Albe- marle Sound, the month of April, 1864, was spent in the fullest enjoyment of all the delights of springtime; beautiful scenery on sound and river, and in the opening life of woods and flowers. The fish and other delicacies of this favored region touched a tender spot in the make-up of veterans, and caused us much congratulation that we had been chosen to cover this flank of the attack on and capture of Plymouth; and the period spent here marked a green spot in the memories of officers and men as the last space of repose and com- fort which fell to our lot during the struggle.
On the 30th we marched through Windsor and the lovely Indian woods to Tayloe's Ferry, on the Roanoke, which we crossed at this point; thence through Hamilton to Greenville, where it was reported that on the fall of Plymouth little Washington had been evacuated by the Federals after burning a considerable portion of the town. Pushing on from Greenville we crossed Contentnea creek, the Neuse and Trent rivers to Trenton; thence to Kinston and back to Weldon. Immediately on our arrival there we were sent to Jar- ratt's Station, on the Petersburg railroad, to drive back the raid and open up the road from there to Stony Creek. A raiding column of Federal cavalry had the day before succeeded in cutting the road and tearing up the track after a hard fight with the small force defend- ing it. On May loth we reached Petersburg, and were at once hurried to Swift Creek, on the Richmond pike, where fighting had been going on for some time. We were now a part of Beauregard's