"Who is this that looks forth like the dawn, fair as the moon, bright as the sun, terrible as an army with banners?"

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

May 14, 1863. Captured! Three teams (twelve mules and four horses), the drivers and two sergeants.

On the Rappahannack:

"Thursday 14th. In P.M. Reg't moved back from the river, on the line of R.R. about 1½ miles. More pickets &c are put out & so we come on oftener. We are placed near woods, now."~ Diary of Horace Barlow (UVM), 119, Horace Barlow, Pvt., Co. C, 12th Regiment

On the Occoquan:

"May 14. At nine o'clock the orderly, who was carrying dispatches and the mail to headquarters, came galloping his horse into camp. "The 'rebs' have got the teams," he quickly cries; and "the 'rebs' have got the teams'" quickly flies to every tent. 

"There is a space of some two miles that is unfordable, between the two regiments, during the high waters of spring; and supposed to be so now, and hence not picketed. Here a little band of eight rebel cavalry cross, each armed with two pistols, and lie in ambush in thick trees, near where our teams almost daily go to the station,- out three miles from camp. 

"As the three teams - twelve mules and four horses, - and with the drivers happened to be two sergeants,  all unarmed - were just emerging from the dark forest, the enemy pounced upon them, cocking their pistols, and ejaculating: "Halt! Halt! There, you d-d Yankees." Resistance is sure death, producing no good; for the rebels would have got the horses, which they were after. 

"Soon all are mounted and steering for the river. Meanwhile we have heard of the affair, and start, now on quick, now double quick time, one company directly for the ford, and three others, down the road, and then on the tracks of the flying guerrillas. But alas! We come to the stream, tired, panting like blood-hounds, a little too late, just as the pursued have crossed." ~ Lt. Edwin Palmer, 13th Regiment, The Second Brigade: or, Camp Life, By a Volunteer (1864) 

Those taken were Sergeants Boyce and Silsby of Company B ; Sergeant Fuller, G. Woodworth and J. Griffith of Company G ; S. Austin of Company H ; J. Carr of Company I and Hubbard J. Searl of Company K. ~ Ralph Orson Sturtevant, Pictorial History of the 13th Regiment Vermont Volunteers 790 (1910)

See also the accounts of this incident of May 14, 1863 by George Boyce and Guy Woodward, two of the captured soldiers.

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