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Orange County Notes

From the Tuesday August 5, 1862 issue of the New York Tribune (original copy given to the Society by Board Member Roderick McLeod):



Two Rebel Cavalry Regiments Defeated.



Special dispatch to The N. Y. Tribune

WASHINGTON, Monday Aug. 4, 1862

     Two hundred of the 5th New-York (Ira Harris) Cavalry and 300 of the 1st Vermont went on a reconnaissance from Culpepper [sic.] Court-House, 17 miles apart. They left at 3 o'clock in the afternoon of Saturday last, and camped at night near Raccoon Ford, on the Rapidan. Early the next morning march was resumed, driving in the enemy's pickets. About 10 o'clock, in the neighborhood of   Orange Court-House, and while marching into town, they were attacked by the enemy, about 500 strong, surrounding our men on all sides.

     After half an hour of severe fighting, our forces succeeded in driving them from the town, killing between thirty and forty, twenty-one of their dead lying in one street, wounding between fifty and sixty, and taking forty-three prisoners, among them one Major, two Captains and two Lieutenants.

     The Union party were commanded by Brig.-Gen. Crawford in person. They enemy were Ashby's cavalry, Col. Robinson. Company G, Capt. Cromb and Company H, Capt. Hammond of the 5th New-York cavalry, captured nearly the whole of them. Many of the prisoners were badly injured by saber cuts. The Major would not surrender when he was struck with a terrible saber blow on the top of his head. One of the captains had one of his ears cut off. The prisoners are now in Culpepper Court-House. The enemy had every advantage over us in position.

     The following are the names of the killed and wounded of the 5th New-York (Ira Harris) Cavalry:
     Cooney, chief bugler, killed, formerly belonged to Company I; Lieut. Gear, Company G, shoulder, seriously; Sergeant Clough, Company G, Stomach, mortally; Private Quinn, eye, mortally; Corporal Charles A. Morris, Company E, arm; Archibald Fraser, Quartermaster Sergeant Company L, knee. There others were wounded slightly in the regiment. There names I could not learn. In the Vermont regiment some five or six men wounded somer seriously, but they were not brought to the hospital in Warrenton.

Headquarters of the Army of Virginia
Saturday, August 3, 1862

Major-General Halleck:

     The reconnoitering column, under Gen. Crawford, crossed the Rapidan, and pushed forward to Orange Court-House, yesterday, and took possession of the town, which was occupied by two regiments of the enemy's cavalry, under Gen. Robertson. Eleven of the enemy were killed, and 52 taken prisoners. Among the latter are: one major, two captains, and two lieutenants. Our loss was two killed and three wounded. The enemy retired in such haste as to leave their wounded on our hands. The Railroad and telegraph lines between Orange Court-House and Gordonsville were destroyed.

JOHN POPE, Major-General

For a slightly differing view point on this skirmish see the Fanny Hume Diary of 1862.

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