I picked up the pace, and we galloped our mounts toward the Mills Road and Lower Bridge Road Intersection. I wanted to surprise any Yank Cavalry contingent that might be there. I was relying on the same tactics that had worked less than an hour before.
We burst on the scene and, thank Heavens, there were no Yanks there. We waited on Captain Greenley to join us.
Once he arrived, I requested, “Captain, please distribute your 10 men on the knoll behind us. It has command of the road junction, plus the roads in all directions for a quarter of a mile.”
He nodded and turned to look back at the knoll I had described. Then he ordered, “Troop, deploy to the hillock to our right; dismount and set up a line along the hill facing the road junction ahead.”
The troop did as he commanded. The Captain rode with the troop to see that the distribution was as to his liking. I waited on the main column with Al and our other nine men.
Major Mosby and the head of the column approached from the south. He halted the column just to the left of the hill on which Captain Greenley was deploying his 10 men and motioned for me to approach. Al and I rode to him and saluted.
He saluted and curtly asked, “What now?”
I answered, “Sir, just follow the base of this hill to our right, and you will join the Lower Bridge Road. Continue on that road through the gap in the steep hills, but do not break out of the gap once you get to the other side. I will be with you momentarily, but I first have to have a conflab with Captain Greenley.”
Mosby harrumphed in an aggravated fashion, which I remembered reading was his terse attitude while on campaign, and ordered, “Forward ho!” Al and I saluted, which Mosby returned as he pushed the column right to edge around the hillock.
I rode up to hillock and found Captain Greenley finishing deploying his men.
He walked to me and asked, “How long should these men stay here?”
“At least until tomorrow afternoon,” I replied. “Their job is to repel any Yank force that tries to come down this road in the interim. They can leave about 1500 hours. I would suggest they return to camp on the C&O. However, they can ride to join our fight tomorrow if they want to. They just need to be careful to not be captured before our ambush of the Yanks. Is there a good Corporal or Sergeant that is commanding them?”
“Yes, there is a good Corporal in command,” he answered.
“Then leave it up to the Corporal as to what to do, based upon what might occur during their deployment,” I suggested.
Captain Greenley nodded and walked to the Corporal to give him his orders.
Al and I rode down the eastern side of the hillock toward the head of the column just it entered the Lower Bridge Road and headed east. Phase 1 had been completed.