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Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/20

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12 Southern Historical Society Papers.

took a very conspicuous part in the first battle of Manassas, and on account of the skillful way his guns were handled that day Imboden was promoted from captain to brigadier-general. Both Johnston and Beauregard complimented him in their official reports of that battle.

Imboden's Brigade, at the time of the order mentioned above, was composed of the Sixty-second Virginia Mounted Infantry, com- manded by that distinguished officer, Colonel George W. Smith, a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute; the Eighteenth Virginia Cavalry, by the General's brother, Colonel George W. Imboden, now a prominent lawyer in West Virginia; White's Battalion, by Major Robert White, late Attorney -General of West Virginia; the Maryland Battalion, by Major Sturgis Davis, of Maryland, who had won his laurels under Turner Ashby; Gilmor's Battalion of Rangers, by Harry Gilmor, of Baltimore, who was as rough and daring a rider as ever drew a saber; McNeil's Rangers, of Hardy and Hamp- shire counties, West Virginia, commanded by Captain John H. Mc- Neil. This was the company that later in the war, under the immediate command of Jesse McNeil, son of Captain J. H. McNeil, first lieutenant of Company D, rode into Cumberland, Md., and brought out two major-generals, Crook and Kelly, from the very midst of their commands. Finally, McClanahan's Battery, com- manded by Captain John H. McClanahan, a Texan, who had served under Ben McCullough in Texas until it got too peaceable there for him.

So, as may be seen, our General had in his brigade a lot of choice spirits, and was well equipped to make a daring raid into the ene- my's lines.

The writer had the honor to command a section of McClanahan's Battery.

Some years ago a Yankee major, giving an account of the cap- ture of Charleston, said:

"The Johnnies had some pretty darned smart officers during the war, and some of them that did the most effective work were the least heard of. Imboden was one of them. He was a smashing good soldier, had the true instincts of a cavalryman, and was as much at home in the saddle for a three days' ride to raid an outpost, as he would have been playing bean poker for apple brandy in a crossroads grocery in the Shenandoah mountains."

Now, nothing delighted a Confederate soldier's heart more than