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OR XLII P1 #242: Reports of Lieutenant Colonel John K. Robinson, 16th PA Cav, Sept 15 and Oct 27, 1864

Numbers 242. Reports of Lieutenant Colonel John K. Robinson, Sixteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, of operations September 15 and October 27.1


GENERAL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations, observations, &c., of the cavalry this day under my command accompanying the reconnaissance made by your command:

After advancing about half a mile outside the infantry picket-line on road leading to Poplar Spring Church I found the road blockaded and picketed by enemy’s cavalry. Only a slight resistance was made for half a mile, but on arriving near said church they were more obstinate, but by throwing out a dismounted skirmish line, supported by a mounted one, the enemy was forced to retire, via J. Hawks’ farm, some distance beyond the J. Clements farm, in which one of the enemy was killed. I had no casualties. Nothing of special interest developed itself. The roads show considerable travel, but nothing indicating the movement of any considerable body of troops. Information received from a citizen to the effect that a brigade of rebel cavalry lies on the plank road two and a half to three miles from the Clements farm.

Respectfully submitted.

Your obedient servant,

Lieutenant Colonel 16th Pa. Cav., Commanding 4th and 16th Pa. Cav. Regts.

Brigadier-General BAXTER.


COLONEL: In compliance with circular from headquarters Second Brigade, &c., this date, I have the honor to report the part taken by Sixteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry in the recent operations on Boydton plank road, &c.:

While the column (Third Brigade) was advancing toward Boydton plank road, leaving Dinwiddie Court-House road three miles from Court-House, one battalion, commanded by Captain J. C. Robinson and one squadron by R. C. Caughey, C Company, picketed said road and branches. They were attacked and charged by the enemy, but repulsed them handsomely, holding roads till relived by First Brigade. In engagement on Boydton plank road the regiment was dismounted about 3.30 p. m. and aligned, joining the infantry left and opposite a very annoying rebel battery. The line had scarce been formed ten minutes till the enemy charged it, but retaining our fire until they came

quite close, then pouring in a heavy volley, our men repulsed them handsomely and punished them severely. No farther assault was made, but a constant sharpshooting fire was kept up by both sides and our line was furiously shelled at short intervals. The line was held till 8.30 p. m., when, in obedience to orders, the regiment was withdrawn with a loss of 5 killed, 22 wounded, and 7 missing.* Most of the latter have turned up.

Respectfully submitted.

Your obedient servant,


Lieutenant Colonel Sixteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, Commanding Regiment.

Colonel M. KERWIN,

Commanding Second Brigade, Second Division, Cavalry Corps.


*But see revised statement, p.159.



  1. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Volume XLII, Part 1 (Serial Number 87), pages 645-646
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