thorough and systematic destruction
Portrait of Maj. Gen. (as of Apr. 15, 1865) George A. Custer, Officer of the Federal Army. American Memory collections, Library of Congress.
Late in the afternoon of March 3 the first Union troops, under command of General George A, Custer, arrived in town. Wet weather, creating transportation difficulties, forced Sheridan to order a two-day halt while several large bodies of soldiers completed a thorough and systematic destruction of the [two] railroads. The depot was burned, miles of track made impassable, and several vital railroad bridges destroyed. In accomplishing the last objective Federal forces also demolished the Marchant mill.