The Richmond Daily Dispatch
June 13, 1863
|Private Charles Chapman of Company A,|
10th Virginia Cavalry Regiment, left,
and unidentified soldier. This unit fought
at Brandy Station.
(Liljenquist Family Collection,
Library of Congress)
The fight at Brandy Station — position of Affairs at Fredericksburg.
The following dispatch, dated Washington, June 9th, is the only notice of the fight in Culpeper which has reached the New York papers:
A severe engagement took place this morning between our cavalry and that of the rebels, under Gen. Stuart. The locality at which it occurred was Beverly's ford, on the Rappahannock, five miles above Rappahannock Station and about the same distance below the Sulphur Springs.
A dispatch from below Fredericksburg, dated the 7th, estimates the number of Confederates there at 30,000. The dispatch adds:
Although the crossing of the Rappahannock at this point was for the third time effected on Friday evening, our forces have advanced no further than the open plain behind the rifle-pits from which the enemy was driven, or rather in which the greater part of his sharp shooters, on whom he depended to held the ford, were captured. The brigade of General Neil crossed over yesterday at ten o'clock and took a position on the left. In the evening Gen. Shaler, who has innately been promoted for conspicuous gallantry displayed at Fredericksburg and Marye's Heights five weeks ago to day, joined us with his brigade. Two lines of battle — the first consisting of Gen. Hewe's forces and the second comprising Shalar's troops — were formed plainly in right of the rebel and under the of back artillery yet very quiet on both. sides. The Sixth Vermont Volunteers, of the brigade commanded by Colonel Grant, were thrown forward as skirmisher, and suffered the only casualties inflicted by the enemy yesterday.
The movement thus far has been conducted differently from the previous advances of our troops. When the army crossed before heavy guns on the heights — a mile, at least, from the river — were relied upon to cover the laying of the pontoons. This time two batteries of field artillery were brought quite down to the bank of the stream, and the diagonal fire which they unceasingly maintained not only kept the rebels silent in their rifle-pits, but successfully prevented the approach of any reinforcements which would otherwise have joined them. Len's orders were that the ford should in no case be given up, and the Florida troops within the rifle-pits were expected to hold them against all comers; but when the shell, and shrapnel, and grape, and canister began to rain down upon them, they were compelled to lay low, and when, an our fire ceased for an instant, the 5th Vermont and 26th New. Jersey regiments charged up the steep ascent, the rebels had no time to get away.