Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 24.djvu/140

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132 Southern Hixti>r!<-l Society Papers.

informed, whether correctly or not I am not able to state, that some of these statements have been incorporated in some of our modern histories, I have concluded to prepare for your columns a correct statement of the occurrences referred to, and in doing so I shall not depend upon my memory, but shall state the facts in the matter under consideration, as recorded in a diary kept by me during the war, and I shall substantiate that record by quotations from the offi- cial reports of the officers (Confederate and Federal) who were actors in these stirring events.

On the 2Oth of May, 1862, the 2d and the 6th regiments of Vir- ginia cavalry, the former under the command of Colonel Munford, and the latter under Colonel Thomas Stanhope Flournoy, who, being the senior officer, had command of both regiments, broke camp near Culpeper Courthouse and marched to Woodville, Rappahannock county. On the following day we crossed the Blue Ridge into Page Valley, in advance of General Ewells' Division, and continued our march to Luray. On the 22d our march was continued in the direc- tion of Front Royal. On the two last-named days, all along our route, the loyal women of that beautiful valley, from the gray-haired matron to the fair, blooming maiden, flocked to the roadside to bid us welcome, and to cheer us on our way.

It is proper to state here, before going into a narration of the events of the following day, that the misstatement referred to above is to the effect that the garrison at Front Royal was captured by the First Maryland (Confederate) Regiment of infantry, and Wheat's Louisana Battalion of Infantry, whereas the facts and the official records will show that there was no Confederate infantry within three or four miles of the Federal force at the time of its capture.

On the following day, the 23rd, our march northward was resumed, but the cavalry was soon sent to the left to cut the railroad and tele- graphic communications between Strasburg and Front Royal, while the infantry pressed on towards the latter place, where a brisk skirm- ish ensued, but the Federal force retreated across both forks of the Shenandoah, carrying with them their artillery and wagon-train, and firing the bridge over the North river after they had crossed it.


In referring to what transpired at Front Royal, General Jackson, in his official report, says: " But in the meantime, Wheat's Battal- ion, Major Wheat, and the First Maryland Regiment, Colonel Brad-