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112 Series I Volume II- Serial 2 - First Manassas

Page 112 OPERATIONS IN MD., AND PA., VA., AND W. VA. Chapter IX

estimated by the officer in command of the guard there at from 800 to 900 men. They made use of the ferry-boat, which they had withdrawn from the Potomac. I had given orders that on any attempt to move the boat fire should be opened on it, and in compliance with these orders Lieutenant Hasbrouck fired from his 12-pounder field howitzer a spherical case shot, which burst directly in range, and covered the boat with a shower of bullets and fragments. The effect was excellent. The horse of a mounted officer leaped overboard, and the boat was rapidly drawn back to the shore. The enemy then formed line along the crest of the bank and commenced firing, but a few well-directed spherical case shot dispersed them, and sent them flying towards Leesburg. I deemed it important to prevent communication along the river between these forces and those opposite Lieutenant-Colonel Everett's position.

To-night I shall order up, Captain Smead's battalion to within supporting distance of both Colonel Everett and Colonel Stiles, and to-morrow morning shall be able to open communication with General Patterson by a trusty hired messenger.

I respectfully request that orders may issue to the proper departments to send to-morrow by canal, in boats of light draught, 18,000 complete rations, excepting the meat ration, of which only 9,000 will be necessary; also, 15,000 ball cartridges elongated bullet, cal. .58; 15,000 ditto, elongated bullet, cal. .69, and 15,000 ditto, round ball, cal. .69, all consigned to Captain John R. Smead, acting assistant quartermaster of this expedition. These stores can come by canal as far as the aqueduct, occupied by Lieutenant-Colonel Everett, and can be thence transported in wagons.

In addition to the before-mentioned ordnance stores, I request that there may be forwarded 140 6-pounder spherical case shot, fixed, and 144 12-pounder spherical case shot, fixed.

I can now at any time, with very small loss, occupy Leesburg, but can see no advantage which would justify even the small loss which would be sustained, and the slight risk to my line which would necessarily result.

Very respectfully, I am, colonel, your most obedient servant,


Colonel Fourteenth Infantry, Commanding Expedition.

Lieutenant Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army.

POOLESVILLE, June 19, 1861-noon.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that a gentleman has just arrived in my camp from Martinsburg, Berkeley County, Virginia, where he was a major of militia. He fled from Martinsburg on the 9th instant, because three companies of Confederate troops arrived there for the purpose of impressing into service all the militia. These three companies were commanded by Captain Letcher, he believes a brother of the governor. This gentleman concealed himself, and escaped with some two hundred others, and made their way through the mountains, away from the roads out of the State. He states that two regiments have been impressed in Berkeley County, most of them strong Union men, who are determined to shoot their officers and go over to the Government troops the first opportunity; that these men carry, many of them, little United States flags concealed about their persons, and intend to

Page 112 OPERATIONS IN MD., AND PA., VA., AND W. VA. Chapter IX