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Regiment: 5th Michigan Cavalry Battles Mentioned: Historical Figures: George A. Custer, John S. Mosby
Head Quarters U.S. Forces Winchester, Va. Nov. 7th 1864 Colonel, I have the honor to state that G.H. Sowle Co. G 5th Michigan Cavalry this day entered on lines from the direction of Berryville and reported as follows. He was take prisoner by men of Mosby’s command on the Maeadanuged Road near Newtown and by them taken to a camp on the Berryville and Winchester Turnpike. There he was placed with a squad of Federal Prisoners numbering about Twenty two and with them compelled to draw lots for the purpose of determining upon a certain number who should be hung. Of the twenty three men, seven were to be executed in retaliation for alike number of Mosby’s command who were hung by General Custer. Of the seven men upon whom the lot fell three were hung, two shot and two escaped. The wounded men one of whom escaped alive by feigning death and being cared for by Union families in the vicinity of the camp. The men who escaped have reported at the post. The accompanying note was formed by a citizen who cut down and buried the bodies, pinned to the clothing of one of the men who were hanged, Capt. Brewster, CS of General Custer’s Command was among the parties captured. The name of one of the men hanged was ascertained to George S. Pronley. He was a member of Co. L, 5th Michigan Cavalry. Very Respectfully Your Obdt. Servt. O. Edwards Col. Comd. Post C. Kingsbury Jr. Lt. Col. & A.A.F. Mid. Mil. Div. Official Jas. W. Forsyth Lt. Col. & Chief of Staff Hd. Qrs. Mid. Mil. Division Cedar Creek, Va. Nov. 8th, 1864 These men have been hung in retaliation for an equal number of Colonel Mosby’s men hung by order of General Custer at Front Royal. Measure for Measure. Official Jas. W. Forsyth Lt. Col. & Chief of Staff Head Quarters Mid. Mil. Div. Cedar Creek, Va. Head Quarters 1st Cavalry Division Nov. 13, 1864 Official A.E. Dana Asst. Adgt. Genl. Head Qrs. 1st Brig 1st Cav. Div. Nov. 14, 1864 Official Chas. H. Safford Capt. & A.A.A.G. Head Qrs. Cavalry M.M.D. Nov. 15, 1864 Official copy furnished for the information of Division Commanders Wm. Russell Jr. Major & A.A.G. Head Quarters 1st Cavalry Division Nov. 13, 1864 Official A.E. Dana Asst. Adgt. Genl. Head Quarters 1st Brig. 1st Div. Cav. Nov. 14, 1864 Official Chas. H. Safford Capt. & A.A.A.G.