Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Charles Russell Lowell.

Charles Russell Lowell, Jr., was born January 2, 1835, at Boston, Massachusetts, to Anna Cabot Jackson Lowell (1811 – 1874), a daughter of Patrick Tracy Jackson, married Charles Russell Lowell, Jr., the eldest son of Unitarian Minister, Charles Russell Lowell, Sr. and brother of James Russell Lowell. Lowell graduated as the valedictorian from Harvard College in 1854, and worked in an iron mill in Trenton, New Jersey, for a few months in 1855. He spent two years abroad, and from 1858 to 1860 was local treasurer of the Burlington and Missouri River Railroad. In 1860, he took charge of the Mount Savage Iron Works in Cumberland, Maryland. In October 1863, Lowell married Josephine Shaw (1843 – 1905), a sister of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, one of his close friends.

Lowell would enter the Union army in June 1861, and was commission Captain of the third Cavalry on May 14, 1861, at the age of 26; Lowell would be made Major by brevet, May 5, 1862, for distinguished services at the battles of Williamsburg and Statusville. Lowell on April 15, 1863, became Colonel of the 2nd Massachusetts Cavalry. He was fatally wounded in the Battle of Cedar Creek on October 19, 1864, when he was promoted brigadier.

JUNE 23-24, 1864.-Skirmishes near Falls Church and Centreville, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry, commanding Cavalry Brigade.

Near Falls Church, Va., June 24, 1864.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that a patrol from the camp of the Sixteenth New York Cavalry, consisting of four men, was fired upon last evening between the pike and the railroad by a party of about ten men, and two of the patrol captured; the other two brought word to Annandale, and Colonel Leazelle sent out a party of forty men, under command of Lieutenant Tuck, Sixteenth New York Cavalry, in search of the attacking party. After having scouted through the country directed Lieutenant Tuck halted his party about one and a half miles beyond Centreville to feed. While the horses were feeding a party of rebels, reported to number about sixty, dashed in upon them. Our party made no stand, and Lieutenant Tuck reports his men as appearing demoralized and panic stricken, scattering in all directions. Lieutenant Tuck is the only one of the party who has as yet (6 p. m.) reached camp, the remainder being either wounded, prisoners, or straggling.

After Lieutenant Tuck had been sent out a citizen reported to Colonel Lazelle that he had been stopped by Mosby last evening near Centreville, and detained under a small guard till morning, and that small parties had been by him along the roadside for a miles or more, appearing to number in all about 100 men. On receipt of this intelligence Colonel Lazelle sent out 150 men, under Major Nicholson, to support Lieutenant Tuck. This party started at 8 a. m., at 2 p. m. Lieutenant Tuck himself returned, reporting attack as above at 11 a. m. He was at once started out by Colonel Lanzelle with a party of fifteen men to overtake the party of 150, and put them on the trail and follow them as far as Aldie. Major Nicholson is still out. A party of 100 men, under Major Forbes, with ambulances, has been sent out from here this evening to the place of the surprise, to pick up stragglers and horses and any wounded men that may be there, and to support Major Nicholson if Mosby is reported by the citizens of Centreville to have had more than the sixty men. Some of our men will probably straggle in during the night.

I have considered it useless to start in direct pursuit Mosby, who had fourteen miles and at least six hours start of any party from here. The roads are so dusty that a pursuing party would be seen for miles and miles, and time given to hide or to escape.

Lieutenant Tuck's written report of the affair will be forwarded as soon as received.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Colonel Second Massachusetts Cavalry, Commanding Brigadier.

APRIL 19, 1864. - Affair at Leesburg, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry, commanding Cavalry Brigade.

Vienna, Va., April 20, 1864.

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report my return to camp. The only rebels in Loundon County are Mosby's four companies, perhaps two companies of the Bedford Cavalry, and incomplete company organizing in Leesburg, and about 40 attached men of White's, and the Sixth and Eleventh Virginia Cavalry.

When the Potomac rose Mosby thought it would be a good time to remove from around Leesburg and Point of Rocks corn which farmers there had been intending to send across the river. He pressed quite a number of teams, sent Company C to Waterford to superintended the business, and has taken away perhaps 250 barrels of corn in the ear; not more, as the farmers are loath to work, and ship off on every opportunity. Meanwhile, he had carefully spread the report below Goose Creek that there was a large force in Loundon County and several hundred men at least on Leesburg.

The only force that has been near Leesburg is his own Company C, and part of a new company raising there, together less than 100 men. He is not sending the corn to Upperville, but to points about the country, some of which we learned. At each of these he has left one or two wagon-loads, whether for his own future use or as a sort of recompense to friends whom he had already eaten out does not appear. While the river is so high, without leaving a force permanently there we cannot prevent this. There is very little corn left to move, however. We reached Leesburg Monday evening and returned to Goose Creek Tuesday noon, bringing 11 prisoners and leaving 1 mortally wounded at a farm-house. That night I expected to send a party to Rectortown or Upperville, to return by Hopewell Gap, but we learned that Mosby in person had been reconnoitering our force, and had gone through Aldie that evening, leaving messages of regard for us with the Union families there. It seemed useless, therefore, to attempt any surprise, so I sent 75 dismounted men to Leesburg to try to take part in a wedding party which was to come off there. They reached the place half an hour too late, but met some of the party on the streets and there was a little smart firing. We lost 1 man killed and 3 wounded, not seriously. Do not know that we did any damage at all. The captain in charge believes his own party, firing without orders in the rear, did at least half the mischief. You will hear from Colonel Grimshaw how he was received when he reached Goose Creek on Monday.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Colonel Second Massachusetts Cavalry, Commanding Brigade.

APRIL 23, 1864. - Affair near Hunter's Mills, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry, commanding Cavalry Brigade.

Vienna, Va., April 23, 1864.

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report all quiet in this vicinity. The pickets near Hunter's Mills were attacked about 4 a. m. to-day by a dismounted party, with a loss of 9 horses and 3 men captured and 1 man wounded. No resistance was made by the pickets, only three shots being fired. A party started out about reveille this morning, as soon as the news of the attack reached camp, and after finding the trail started after the party in rapid pursuit, came in sight of them about 10 miles of Aldie, and chased them up the pike through the town, the rebels scattering in all directions.

Lieutenant W. H. Hunter, of Company A, Mosby's battalion, was taken prisoners during the chase and brought to this camp. Two horses were retaken and one shot. One man was wounded slightly. The party consisted of 50 men, under the command of Mosby himself. They came down to the vicinity of the picket and crossed the creek mounted, where a portion of them dismounted and advanced on foot to the attack.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Second Massachusetts Cavalry, Commanding Cav. Brigadier

APRIL 28-MAY 1, 1864. - Scout from Vienna toward Upperville, Va.

Washington, D. C., May 3, 1864.
Colonel J. C. KELTON,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Hdqrs. of the Army:

COLONEL: I have the honor herewith to inclose the report of Colonel Lowell, Second Massachusetts Cavalry, commanding cavalry brigade at Vienna, of his recent expedition to the vicinity of Upperville.

This is the third successful operation of Colonel Lowell within the last month, embracing in all a capture of about 50 of Mosby's men, between 30 and 40 horses and equipments, and a good deal of other property. I desire to commenced in strong terms the zeal and ability displayed by Colonel Lowell in these various expeditions.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Numbers 1. Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry, commanding brigade.
July 8, 1864.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report of Major Forbes' scout as complete as is yet possible. I have not talked with Lieutenant Kuhls or Captain Stone, who is badly wounded, but send what I learned on the ground:

Major Forbes left here with 150 men (100 Second Massachusetts Cavalry, 50 Thirteenth New York Cavalry) Monday, p. m. Tuesday a. m. went through Aldie, and found all quiet toward the gaps. Tuesday p. m. went by Ball's Mill to Leesburg. Heard of Mosby's raid at Point of Rocks, and learned that he had sent four or five wagons of plunder through Leesburg, under a guard of about sixty men, the afternoon before. Heard nothing of any other force this side of the ridge. He returned that night to the south of Goose Creek, as directed, and on Wednesday a. m. went again by Ball's Mill to Leesburg. Still heard nothing of Mosby or any force. From what I learn from citizens I think Mosby passed between Leesburg and the Potomac some time on Tuesday, crossed Goose Creek, and moved westward toward Aldie on Wednesday; learned of Major Forbes' second visit to Leesburg, and laid in ambush for him at Ball's Mill.

Major Forbes returned from Leesburg by Centre's Mill (four miles above), came down by Aldie, and halted for two or three hours about one and a half miles east, on the Little River pike; when Mosby learned this he moved south, and struck the pike about one and a quarter miles east of the major's position, being hidden till he had reached about half a mile west on the pike. Major Forbes was duly notified by his advance guard, mounted his men, and moved them from the north to the south of the pike. As the rear was crossing Mosby fired one shell from his 12-pounder (the only time it was fired), which burst entirely too high. As Major Forbes formed on the south his advanced guard, which had dismounted and fired as Mosby came up, fell back, still keeping a little north of the pike, and took an excellent position somewhat on the flank.

Up to this time I think all the dispositions were admirable. Major Forbes' two squadrons were formed, his third squadron and rear guard not formed, but nearly so, and no confusion. Mosby's men, who were not in any order, but were down the road in a "nick," had just reached the fence corner some 225 yards off, and a few had dismounted, under a fire from the advanced guard, to take down the fence. When two panels of fence were down the men trotted through for about seventy-five yards, and came gradually ordered to fire with carbines. Here was the first mistake. It created confusion among the horses, and the squadron in the rear added to it by firing a few pistol shots. Had the order been given to draw sabers and charge the rebels would never have got their gun off, but I think Major Forbes, seeing how uneasy his horses were at the firing, must have intended to dismount some of his men. At any rate, he attempted to move the first squadron by the right flank. The rebels saw their chance, gave a yell, and our men, in the confusion of the moment, broke. The two rear squadrons went off in confusion. Attempts were made, with some success, to rally parts of the first squadron in the next field, and again near Little River Church, one mile off.

Captain Stone was wounded here, and I believe all the non-commissioned officers of A and L Companies present wounded or killed. There was little gained. I have only to report a perfect rout and a chase for five to seven miles. We lost Major Forbes, Lieutenant Amory, and Mr. Humprheys (chaplain), from Second Massachusetts, and Lieutenant Burns, Thirteenth New York Cavalry, prisoners, all unhurt. Captain Stone, Second Massachusetts, and Lieutenant Schuyler, Thirteenth New York, very badly wounded. Lieutenant Kuhls alone came safely to camp. Of men, we lost, killed outright, 7, Second Massachusetts; 5, Thirteenth New York. Wounded we brought in 27 will die. About 40 others have come to camp half mounted, and Mosby was reported to have 44 prisoners; quite a number, you will see, still unaccounted for. Some of them are probably wounded, and some still on their way to camp, and others will be made prisoners.

Mosby went up toward Upperville with his prisoners and his dead and wounded about midnight Wednesday. I reached the ground about 11.30 a. m., and remained in plain sigh for about three hours; then searched through all the woods and moved to Centreville, where I again waited an hour in hopes some stragglers would join us. We only picked up half a dozen, however.

The soldiers and the citizens all speak in high terms of the gallantry of the officers; Major Forbes especially remained in the first field till every man had left it, emptied his revolver, and, in the second field, where Company A tried to stand, he disabled one man with his saber, and lunged through Colonel Mosby's coat. His horse was then killed and fell on his leg, pinning him till he was compelled to surrender.

More than 100 horses were taken. Accouterments, arms, &c., will also be missing. I cannot yet give the precise number.
Mosby's force is variously estimated at from 175 to 250, mrs. Davis and her daughter putting it at 250 to 300 men. I think he had probably about 200. What his loss was I cannot say, as he picket up all his dead and wounded and took them off in the night. The Union people in Aldie report that he took them of fin the night. The Union people in Aldie report that he took them in five wagons. A wounded sergeant reports hearing the names of 3 or 4 spoken of as killed; 1 mortally wounded man was left on the ground. I think the chance was an excellent one to whip Mosby and take his gun. I have no doubt Major Forbes though so too; as the wounded men say there was not enough difference in numbers to talk about. The chance was lost. I have scouting parties out to Centreville to watch Thoroughfare Gap and the country south, but have not at present any party to the north beyond Chantilly and Dranesville. A part of my picket-line had not been relieved for two days. I shall try to see the general this p. m. for a few minutes, if there is nothing new here and if the orderly brings word that he had returned to the city.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Second Massachusetts Cavalry, Commanding Brigade.

Numbers 2. Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry.
November 17, 1863.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that a sergeant and 2 men of Thirteenth New York Cavalry were captured and 1 man wounded, on picket at Germantown, about 5 o'clock last evening. The testimony of the wounded man, and of a family living in sight of the affair, goes to show that 1 man in our uniform approached the vedette on the road, and while his attention was directed to a pretended pass, between 20 and 30 men in Union overcoats rushed out of the woods and captured the sergeant and 2 men, leaving a third wounded on the field. It is said that 2 of rebels were wounded. The party retreated at once up Little River pike.

Three parties of 50 men each were sent out, but failed to overtake the rebels. There were one or two alarms during the night, but there does not appear to have been any foundation for them.

I am, colonel, your most obedient servant,

DECEMBER 9, 1863 - Affairs at and near Lewinsville, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry.
Vienna, Va.,
December 10, 1863.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that the party sent out, on the 8th instant, through Frying Pan and Dranesville returned late last evening without success. They report having seen scattering parties of guerrillas, which they pushed but failed to capture. At about 12 o'clock last night firing was heard in the direction of the vedette station on the junction of the Lewinsville road and Leesburg and Alexandria Pike. It appears that Mosby and 30 men attacked the corporal and 5 men stationed there. His advance was halted by the vedette, and the reply was given, "Friends, with the countersign;" an instant after the whole party charged down on the post while the corporal and his men were in the act of mounting. They captured two men, one of them supposed to be wounded, and 5 horses. They left one horse dead on the field, this horse belonging to the man who had answered the challenge. It was reported at an adjoining house that one of there men was badly wounded.

Simultaneously with this attack, 30 men (supposed to be under Captain Smith and Lieutenant Turner, of Mosby's command) attacked the Lewinsville Station. This party stopped at the house of a Mr. Griffith, a good Union man, and demanded of him where the picket was stationed. He misled them, so that instead of charging on the reserve, they found only the vedette in the road, as it happened.

The officer of the picket was visiting this post at the time. The rebels scattered their men and endeavored to effect their capture. The officer was thrown from his horse and slightly injured, but they both succeeded in making their escape. The reserve turned out dismounted, and the rebels continued at a charge up the road toward Leesburg. There being no officer at the post, the men failed to mount and pursue. One of Mosby's men was captured with his horse, arms and equipments. On the alarm a force of 40 men, under Captain Taylor, of the Thirteenth New York Cavalry, was sent out to cut off their retreat, but failed to come up with them, as Mosby soon after this scattered his men through the woods.

The report of the Sixth Virginia Cavalry being in this vicinity id unfounded, except so far as some 30 men and an officer of this regiment being ordered down on recruiting service.

I am, colonel, very respectfully,

DECEMBER 13, 1863 - Affair at Germantown, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry.
Vienna, Va.,
December 13, 1863.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that the dismounted party set out some days since returned today, after scouting in the direction of Dranesville. They report everything quiet in that vicinity. Mosby, after attacking the picket post at Lewinsville, went up through Dranesville. They reported there that they had been whipped and 3 of their men badly wounded.

This morning at about 3 o'clock the picket at Germantown were surprised by a party of guerrillas, dismounted, some 20 strong. They crawled up and shot (without any warning), mortally wounding 2 men and capturing 5 horses and their equipments.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
C. R. Lowell, jr.,

DECEMBER 18-20, 1863. - Scout from Vienna to Middleburg, Va.
Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry.
Vienna, Va.,
December 20, 1863.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that on Thursday night [17th instant] about 10 o'clock General Corcoran sent a communication that his picket at Sangster's Station had been attacked by a large party of guerrillas, and that he had sent a party of Cavalry and infantry out toward Centreville to intercept them. Not suspecting that it amounted to anything more than some operations of Kincheloes guerrillas, I simply assured myself that the pickets and outposts were on the alert. During Friday forenoon, hearing from Alexandria that the bridge had been destroyed, I made preparations to go out, and was just starting when your telegram reached me.

An officer whom I sent to Fairfax Courthouse failed to obtain any definite information, and inferring that the party had gone toward Aldie, I went up Little River pike and came upon their trail 2 miles beyond Chantilly. As far as I learned, the forces, consisting of Jones' old brigade (now Rosser's) of three regiments, amounting to 1,100 cavalry and 200 dismounted men, and White's battalion of from 300 to 400, left Falmouth Thursday forenoon without any wagons, starting with 1 ambulance, which they soon sent back. They traveled rapidly, and at daylight Friday morning were in Middleburg. They passed through Upperville and Paris about 9 o'clock toward Benig's Ford. Stragglers told the citizens that they were going to winter on the Shenandoah, as they did last year; that they lost a captain and two men in the attack on the picket at Sangster's and three men were drowned crossing the Occoquan. I arrived at Middleburg at daybreak Saturday morning. Going up we saw nothing but 5 of Mosby's men, whom we pursued, and captured 4 of their horses and accouterments, 3 men and 1 horse escaping in the woods. I turned around and sent a party into Leesburg to find out about White's movements. A few of his men had been there Friday afternoon, and it appears to be White's intention to winter in Loudoun County. Mosby evidently expected this movement, and his command aided as guides and scouts.

I divided my command into four parties coming home. A party returning through Dranesville, surrounded a house where they suspected the presence of Mosby's men, but, through ignorance of locality, the men escaped, all but 2. They captured 12 horses and equipments.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Report of Colonel Charles R. Lowell, jr., Second Massachusetts Cavalry.
Vienna, Va.,
December 22, 1863.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that there were from 20 to 30 guerrillas in the neighborhood last night. They attacked a picket station of a corporal and 5 men near Hunter's Mill, with mounted and dismounted men, taking 4 horses and wounding 2 men. Soon afterward an officer and escort on road to Fairfax Courthouse were fired at by 10 or 15 men, and wounded 2 men. One of the wounded men near Hunter's Mill was shot a second time through the body by a guerrilla, after he had surrendered and given up his pistol. Mounted and dismounted party were sent out, but the rebels had disappeared.

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

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