David.Gettman November 2nd, 2008
ONE HUNDRED YEARS WITH THE SECOND CAVALRY
By Joseph I. Lambert, Major, Second Cavalry
Copyright 1939 Commanding Officer, Second Cavalry, Fort Riley, Kansas
Capper Printing Company, Inc.
Merritt’s force now moved to Shepherdstown, West Virginia, where it remained until August 25. On this date it made a reconnaissance toward Kearneysville, in conjunction with the Third Cavalry Division. Here the enemy’s infantry was met and it drove the Union cavalry back to Shepherdstown. At this place Custer’s brigade became heavily involved with the enemy and was forced to retire across the Potomac. After this action the rest of the division took up a position on the right of the main army.
The First Division moved out again on the 28th in the direction of Leetown to reconnoiter the enemy. This movement was made in connection with all the cavalry, which marched in parallel columns under General Torbert. Upon approaching Leetown the Second Cavalry was detached under Lieutenant Harrison to go to Smithfield. Hardly had it started when it encountered a superior force of enemy cavalry. General Merritt soon reenforced the regiment and then the combined forces charged the Confederates, driving them beyond Leetown. The division now continued the march but in a few minutes again encountered the enemy cavalry. The First and Second Cavalry drew sabers and charged at once. In the combat that followed there was much hand-to-hand fighting, but soon the Union troops had the enemy on the run and drove them across the Opequan River at Smithfield. That night the cavalry camped on the heights overlooking this town. Continue Reading »