Original Document
Original Document
Orders and Correspondence in Regard to Stuart's Expedition into Maryland and Pennsylvania, October, 1862.

Headquarters, Department of Noth'n. Va. October 18th, 1862.

Gen. S. Cooper, Adjutant and Inspector General:–

General–In forwarding the report of Major General Stuart of his expedition into Pennsylvania. I take occasion to express to the department my sense of the boldness, judgment and prudence he displayed in its execution, and cordially join with him in his commendations of the conduct and endurance of the brave men be commanded.

To his skill and their fortitude, under the guidance of an overruling Providence, is their success due.

I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your obedient servant.

R. E. LEE, General.

Gen. Lee's Instructions. HEADQUARTERS, ARMY of NORTHERN VA.,

Maj. Gen. J. E. B. Stuart, Commanding Cavalry:

General–An expedition into Maryland with a detachment of cavalry, if it can be successfully executed, is at this time desirable. You will, therefore, for a detachment of from twelve to fifteen hundred well mounted men, suitable for such an expedition, and should the information from your scouts lead you to suppose that your movement can be concealed from bodies of the enemy that would be able to resist it, you are desired to cross the Potomac above Williamsport, leave Hagerstown and Greencastle on your right, and proceed to the rear of Chambersburg, and endeavor to destroy the railroad bridge over the branch of the Conococheagne. Any other damage that you can inflict upon the enemy or his means of transportation you will also execute. You are desired to gain all information of the position, force and probable intent of the enemy which you can, and in your progress into Pennsylvania you will take measures to inform yourself of the various routes that you may take on your return to Virginia.

To keep your movement secret it will be necessary for you to arrest all citizens that may give information to the enemy; and should you meet with citizens of Pennsylvania holding State or government offices, it will be desirable, if convenient, to bring them with you, that they may be used as hostages, or the means of exchange for our own citizens that have been carried off by the enemy. Such persons will, of course, be treated with all the respect and consideration that circumstances will admit. Should it be in your power to supply yourself with horses, or other necessary articles on the list of legal capture, you are authorised to do so.

Having accomplished your errand you will rejoin this army as soon as practicable. Reliance is placed upon your skill and judgment in the successful execution of this plan, and it is not intended or desired that you should jeopardize the safety of your command, or go farther than your good judgment and prudence may dictate.

Colonel Imboden has been desired to attract the attention of the enemy towards Cumberland, so that the river between that point and where you may recross may be less guarded. You will, of course, keep out your scouts to give you information, and take every other precaution to secure the success and safety of the expedition. Should you be led so far east as to make it better in your opinion, to continue around to the Potomac, you will have to cross the river in the vicinity of Leesburg.

I am, with great respect, your ob't serv't.

R. E. Lee, General.

Official: R. H. Chilton, A. A. General.
Stuart's Appeal to His Soldiers. Headquarters. Cavalry Division, October 9th, 1862.

Soldiers–You are about to engage in an enterprise which, to insure success, imperatively [sic] demands at your hands coolness, decision and bravery–implicit obedience to orders, without question or cavil, and the strictest order and sobriety on the march and in bivouac. The destination and extent of this expedition had better be kept to myself than known to you. Suffice it to say that, with the hearty co-operation of officers and men, I have not a doubt of its success which will reflect credit in the highest degree upon your arms. The orders which are hereby published for your government are absolutely necessary and must be rigidly enforced.

J. E. B. Stuart,
Major-General Commanding.

Stuart's Report of the Affair. Order–No. 13.
Headquarters, Cavalry Division, October 9th, 1862.

During the expedition into the enemy's country, on which this command about to engage brigade commanders will make arrangements for seizing horses, the property of citizens of the United States, and all other property subject to legal capture, provided that in no case will any species of property be taken except by authority given in person or in writing of the commander of brigade, regiment, or captain of a company, in the absence of his superior officers. In all cases a simple receipt will be given, to the effect that the article is seized for the use of the Confederate States, giving place, date and name of owners, in order to enable the individual to have recourse upon his government for damage. Individual plunder for private use is positively forbidden, and every instance must be punished in the severest manner, for an army of plunderers consummates its own destruction. The capture of anything will not give the captor any individual claim, and all horses and equipments will be kept to be apportioned upon the return of the expedition through the entire division.

Brigade commanders will arrange to to [sic] have one-third of their respective commands engaged in leading horses, provided enough can be procured, each man linking so as to led three horses: the led horses being habitually in the centre of the brigade, and the remaining two-thirds will keep, at all times, prepared for action. The attack, when made, must be vigorous and overwhelming, giving the enemy no time to reconnoiter or consider anything, except his best means of flight. All persons found in transit must be detained, subject to the orders of the Division Provost Marshal, to prevent information reaching the enemy.

As a measure of justice to our many good citizens who, without crime, have been taken from their homes and kept by the enemy in prison, all public functionaries–such as magistrates, postmasters sheriffs, and c.–will be seized as prisoners. They will be kindly treated and kept as hostages for our own.

No straggling from the route of march or bivouac for the purpose of obtaining provisions, and c., will be permitted in any case, the commissaries and quartermasters being required to obtain and furnish all such supplies in bulk as may be necessary.

So much of this order as authorizes the seizures of persons and property will not take effect until the command crosses the Pennsylvania line.

The utmost activity is enjoined upon the detachments procuring horses, and unceasing vigilance upon the entire command. Major J. P. W. Hairston is hereby appointed Division Provost Marshal. By command of Major General J. E. B. Stuart

R. C. Price,
First Lieutenant and A. D. C.

Headquarters Cavalry Division, October 14th, 1862.
Col. R. H. Chilton, A. A. Gen. Army North'n Va:

Colonel–I have the honor to report that on the 9th inst., in compliance with instructions from the Commanding General Army Northern Virginia, I proceeded on an expedition into Pennsylvania with a cavalry force of 1,800 and four pieces of horse artillery, under command of Brigadier General Hampton and Colonels W. H. F. Lee and Jones. This force rendezvoused at Darksville at twelve M. and marched thence to the vicinity of Hedgesville, where it encamped for the night. At daylight next morning (October 10) I crossed the Potomac at McCoy's, between Williamsport and Hancock, with some little opposition, capturing two or three horses of the enemy's pickets. We were told here by the citizens that a large force had camped the night before at Clear Spring, and were supposed to be en route to Cumberland. We proceeded northward until we reached the turnpike leading from Hagerstown to Hancock, known as the National road. Here was a signal station on the mountain, and most of the party, with their flags and apparatus, were supprised [sic] and captured, and also eight or ten prisoners of war from whom, as well as from the citizens, I found that a large force alluded to had crossed but an hour ahead of me, towards Cumberland and consisted of six regiments of Ohio troops and two batteries, under Gen. Cox, and were en route, via Cumberland, for the Kanawha. I sent back this intelligence at once to the Commanding General. Striking directly across the Nation road, I proceeded in the direction of Mercersburg, Pa., which point was reached about noon. I was extremely anxious to reach Hagerstown, where large supplies were stored, but was satisfied, from reliable information, that the notice the enemy had of my approach, and the proximity of his forces, would enable him to prevent my capturing it. I therefore turned towards Chambersburg. I did not reach this point till after dark, in a rain. I did not deem it safe to defer the attack till morning, nor was it proper to attack a place full of women and children without summoning it first to surrender.

I accordingly sent in a flag of truce, and found no military or civil authority in the place; but some prominent citizens who met the officer were notified that the place would be occupied, and if any resistance were made the place would be shelled in three minutes. Brigadier Wade Hampton's command being in the advance, took possession of the place, and I appointed him Military Governor of the city. No incidents occurred during the night, during which it rained continuously.–The officials all fled the town on our approach, and no one could be found who would admit that he held office in the place. About 275 sick and wounded in the hospitals were paroled. During the day a large number of horses of citizens were seized and brought along. The wires were cut, and railroads obstructed. Next morning it was ascertained that a large number of small arms and munitions of war were stored about the railroad buildings, of which that could not be easily brought away were destroyed, consisting of about five thousand new muskets, pistols, sabres, amunition [sic]; also, a large assortment of army clothing. The extensive machine shops and depot buildings of the railroad, and several trains of loaded cars, were entirely destroyed.

From Chambersburg I decided, after mature consideration, to strike for the vicinity of Leesburg, as the best route of return, particularly as Cox's command would have rendered the direction of Cumberland, full of mountain gorges, particularly hazardous. The route selected was through an open country. Of course I left nothing undone to prevent the inhabitants from detecting my real route and object. I started directly towards Gettysburg, but having passed the Blue Ridge, turned back towards Hagerstown for six or eight miles, and then crossed to Maryland by Emmettsburg, where, as we passed, we were hailed by the inhabitants with the most enthusiastic demonstrations of joy. A scouting party of 150 lancers had just passed towards Gettysburg, and I regret exceeding that my march did not admit of the delay necessary to catch them. Taking the road towards Frederick, we intercepted dispatches from Colonel Rush (lancers) to the commander of the scout which satisfied me that our whereabouts was still a problem to the enemy.

Before reaching Frederick, I crossed the Monocacy, continued the march through the night, via Liberty, New Market, Monrovia on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, where we cut the telegraph wires and obstructed the railroad. We reached, at daylight Hayattstown on McClellan's line of wagon communication with Washington, but we found only a few wagons to capture, and pushed on to Barnesville, which we found just vacated by a company of the enemy's cavalry. We had here corroborated what we had heard before, that Stoneman had between 4,000 and 5,000 troops about Poolesville and guarding the river fords. I started directly for Poolesville, but instead of marching through the woods, leaving it two or three miles to my left, and getting into the road from Poolesville to the month of the Monocacy. Guarding well my flanks and rear, I pushed boldly forward, meeting the head of the enemy's column going towards Poolesville.

I ordered the charge, which was responded to in handsome style by the advance squadron (Irving's) of Lee's brigade, which drove back the enemy's cavalry upon the column of infantry advancing to occupy the crest from which the cavalry were driven. Quick as thought Lee's sharpshooters sprang to the ground, and, engaging the infantry skirmishers, held them in check till the artillery advance came up, which, under the gallant Pelham, drove back the enemy's cavalry upon the column of infantry advancing to occupy the crest from which the cavalry were driven. Quick as thought Lee's sharpshooters sprang to the ground, and, engaging the infantry skirmishers, held them in check till the artillery advance came up, which, under the gallant Pelham, drove back the enemy's force to his batteries beyond the Monocacy, between which and our solitary gun quite a spirited fire continued for some time. This answered, in connection with the high crest occupied by our piece, to screen entirely my real movement quickly to the left making a bold and rapid stride for White's Ford, to make my way across before the enemy at Poolesville and Monocacy could be aware of my design. Although delayed somewhat by about two hundred infantry, strongly posted in the cliffs over the ford, yet they yielded to the moral effect of a few shells before engaging our sharp shooters, and the crossing of the canal (now dry) and river was affected with all the precision of passing a defile on drill.

A section of artillery being sent with the advance and placed in position on the Loudon side, another piece on the Maryland height, while Pelham continued to occupy the attention of the enemy with the other, withdrawing from position to position until he was ordered to cross. The enemy was marching from Poolesville in the meantime, but came up in line of battle on the Maryland height, while Pelman continued to occupy the attention of the enemy with the other, withdrawing from position to position until he was ordered to cross. The enemy was marching from Poolesville in the meantime, but came up in line of battle on the Maryland bank only to receive a thundering salutation with evident effect, from our guns on this side. I lost not a man killed on the expedition, and only a few slight wounds. The enemy's loss is not know; but Pelham's one gun compelled the enemy's battery to change its position three times. The remainder of the march was destitute of interest. The conduct of the command and their behavior towards the inhabitants is worthy the highest praise; a few individual cases only were exceptions in this particular.

Brigadier General Hampton and Colonels Lee, Jones, Wickham and Butler, and the officers under their command, are entitled to my lasting gratitude for their coolness in danger and cheerful obedience to orders. Unoffending persons were treated with civility, and the inhabitants were generous in profers [sic] of provision on the march. We seized and brought over a large number of horses, the property of citizens of the United States.

The valuable information obtained in this reconnoissance [sic] as to the distribution of the enemy's force was communicated orally to the Commanding General, and need not be here repeated. A number of public functionaries and prominent citizens whom the enemy has torn from their homes and confined in dungeons in the North. One or two of my men lost their way and are probably in the hands of the enemy.

The results of this expedition, in a moral and political point of view, can hardly be estimated, and consternation among property holders in Pennsylvania beggars description.

I enclose a map of the expedition, drawn by Capt. W. W. Blackford, to accompany this report. Also, a copy of orders enforced during the march.

Believing that the hand of God was clearly manifested in the signal deliverance of my command from danger, and the crowning successes attending it, I ascribe to Him the praise, the honor and the glory.

I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your obedient servant-

J. E. B. Stuart, Major-General Commanding Cavalry.
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