Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 13.djvu/144

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Reminiscences of Cavalry Operations. 143

cork out of the opposite end, and you could hear the ball rattle in the runlet. They had captured the bushwhacker and wanted me to punish him.

My best efforts had to be exerted to keep whiskey out of camp in those mountains. Our expedition had been bloodless, but we had en- joyed it, as we had the best the country could afford, and brought back some fine cattle and sheep. Getting back to our old lines we have had little feed. The day after our return the enemy had moved across the mountains towards Gordonsville, and we hurried in that direction over sleety roads, and I think it was the roughest march we ever made. Arriving near that place we learned that Lomax had repulsed the raiding party, and we returned to Staunton and went into camp near Swoope's Depot on the Virginia Central railroad.

We had hardly gotten settled we had not been here but a day or two when Rosser sent an order for me to report to him, on arriving at his camp late in the evening he informed me he had in contempla- tion a trip to Beverley, West Virginia, eighty miles off, and had an order for so many volunteers or a detail of so many men from my brigade to go. I told him that my men, as he knew, had lost every thing, but that my quartermaster was expected from Richmond the next day, and after his arrival with the necessary supplies, and I could shoe up my horses, I would be glad to second him in his wishes. The snow was very deep and the weather very threatening. He replied, "I have the order and I am going." I took the order back with me and handed it to ihe Adjutant-General of the brigade. It was sent to the colonels commanding regiments. They reported at my headquarters, and requested me to intercede for these men, saying, as I knew, they were not in condition. I told them what had already occurred, and they asked to be allowed to go to see Rosser; to this I consented, and when they returned they were very indig- nant at his reception of them, and it was evident that they had no confidence in him or his care for his men. I could not get a corpo- ral's guard of volunteers and the detail was ordered. It was bitter. About sunrise the next morning, the time appointed for them to move, Rosser and his staff, came by my headquarters, to gather up the command. His Inspector-General, Captain R. B. Kennon, called at my tent, and asked me where my complement for the expedition was. I replied that the orders had been issued the night previous, and the detail had been instructed to report to Colonel Morgan, of the First Virginia ; that I had heard the reveille bugle, and had no doubt they were at Colonel Morgan's headquarters, In about half