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Lewellyn Garrish Estes


U.S. Army
Medal Of Honor, Civil War

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Late in the afternoon of August 30, 1864, General Howard's advancing Union Infantry camped about four miles from the Flint River in Georgia. Without water for his exhausted troops, General Howard asked Captain Lewellyn Estes if he would take his Cavalry in an effort to get water from the river for the troops. Valiantly, at the head of his command, Captain Estes led the 96th Illinois Cavalry on a charge against the Confederate barricade at the river. Within an hour his fierce charge, which had caught the rebels entirely by surprise, scattered the enemy force and sent them across the river. Returning to his command, and upon being congratulated by General Howard, Captain Estes asked, "Do you want me to take the bridge." "Can you do it?" General Howard asked. Captain Estes replied that he could and, with the general's permission, led two regiments of dismounted cavalry back to the river. With two companies of the 10th Ohio, Captain Estes charged across the bridge to rout the enemy. At the time of his charge the bridge was burning in several places, but armed only with a revolver, Captain Estes continued at the head of his men, crossing and driving the enemy back far enough for the rest of General Howard's Army to also cross.

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