Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Brig. Gen. Richard Taylor's Louisiana
Brigade played a major role in 

Jackson's Valley Campaign
of 1862.  (M.D. Jones Collection)
[Richmond Daily Dispatch, June 21, 1862]

The battle near Port Republic.
     It seems to be generally admitted that this battle must be designated as the battle of "Cross Keys"--The term, although derived from Yankee sources, seems to have been adopted by both parties. The subjoined account of the affair is from the Lynch burg Virginian, received from an officer who participated in the engagement:
    The battle ground is five miles from Port Republic. General Ewell's division fought this action, and chiefly by Brigadier-General Trimble's brigade on the right, who, by skillful selection of his position, and judicious maneuvers, with 1,705 men — defeated in four several charges two full brigades of the enemy, numbering over 6,000 men and two batteries of artillery; killing and wounding of the enemy over 2,000 and with a loss in his own brigade of over 124 killed and wounded.
     Perhaps no action during the war has exhibited such brilliant results, obtained by skill in maneuvering on the field, as well as hard fighting, Gen. Trimble's theory seems to be unexpected and sudden assaults upon the enemy, and desperate fighting only when a great point can be gained.
     No officer of the army has gained suddenly more distinction than Gen. Trimble has done by his quick perceptions and swift movements, showing the highest qualities to command.
     After the battle, Gen. Trimble, we understand, strongly counselled a night attack on Fremont's whole army, urging its complete success, but in view of the decision of Gen. Jackson to attack Gen. Shields next day, the night attack was not sanctioned.
     Events afterwards fully showed that this night attack would have demolished Fremont's whole army and captured all his artillery, as his army was broken down and demoralized to such a degree as to have made but little resistance.
     Prisoners of Fremont's army acknowledge 1,000 killed in this battle, and near 4,000 in killed, wounded and missing. Large numbers of his men availed themselves of the chances of a battle to desert.
      The famous Dutch Bucktalls, and Eighth New York Dutch regiment, Blenker's men, were entirely demolished in this action a just retribution for their excesses in the Valley, by insults, abuse, robbery, and destruction of property.
     After the defeat of Shields on Monday, Fremont retired rapidly down the Valley, no doubt fearing a pursuit, and did not stop until he reached Mount Jackson, where he has halted, as if to make a stand.
     Jackson's army is resting both men and horses, and taking care of the sick. What his next move will be no our known — something Western beyond the Ohio.

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