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MARCHING ON FAYETTEVILLE.
“The ruined homesteads of the Palmetto State will long be remembered. The army might safely march the darkest night; the crackling pine woods shooting up their columns of flame and the burning houses along the way would light it.
on, while the dark clouds and pillars of smoke would safely cover its rear.”
Slocum, with the left wing, and Kilpatrick's cavalry covering his left flank, moved to Winnsboro', lying north-west of Columbia, which the foragers set on fire before he could arrive with his columns to prevent it. · Beauregard had fallen back on Charlotte from Columbia, thinking that it would be the next place on which Sherman would move. Cheatham's Corps, of Hood's old army, was striving to make a junction with him at this place—having marched all the way from Augusta almost parallel with Kilpatrick's cavalry.
A heavy rain storm now set in, making the roads almost impassable, yet Sherman, for two days, pushed on toward Charlotte—but on the 23rd the army suddenly made a grand right-wheel, and facing the rising sun, left this place, as it had Augusta and Charleston, far in the rear. Breasting the pitiless storm, this noble army pushed forward toward Fayetteville—the line of march cutting the swollen rivers that a hundred years before so obstructed Cornwallis in his pursuit of Greene,
Kilpatrick, in the meantime, covered this movement as long as he could, in order to enable the army to get across these formidable rivers without opposition. But when it was discovered that Sherman was actually crossing the country to Fayetteville, Hampton and Wheeler, with the rebel cavalry, aitempted to reach the place first, on which Hardee, in his retreat from Charleston, was marching. In endeavoring to prevent this junction, Kilpatrick undertook to hold three roails, over any one of which he thought the enemy might
pass. On one of them, with a small force, he lay one night, when his camp was suddenly surprised by Hampton, and swept like a whirlwind.
His head-quarters were carried in a twinkling, and all his urtillery captured, while he and his bold troopers were driven into a swamp. His case now seemed hopeless, but looking out from his hiding place, he saw that the rebels were wholly taken up with plundering his camp, when rallying his remaining men, he charged them so suddenly and fiercely that they were driven back in confusion. Instantly turning the artillery on them he completed their discomfiture, and seized with panic they fled, leaving all the captured prisoners and artillery in his possession.
Crossing the Catawba without loss, Sherman struck for the Pedee, at Cheraw, where the rebels made a feeble stand, but were swept away with a single blow, leaving twenty-five pieces of artillery in our hands.
In the meantime the news reached the army that Charleston was evacuated, and the Union flag once more flying over Fort Sumier.
The troops, under Hardee, commenced leaving the place on the night of the 16th, and by next night were all gone. At midnight, some soldiers fired the upper part of the city, destroying the railroad depots, in which were two hundred kegs of powder, and a vast amount of cotton. The hali-starved
poor of the city rushed into the burning buildings to snatch from the games some of the rice stored in them, when the powder exploded killing a hundred or
At daylight, the rebel rams in the harbor blew up
with terrific explosion
The next morning, the 18th, the Mayor surrendered the city to Gillmore, with all the surrounding forts, and the National flag floated once more over what had been the empo