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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 27, Part 2 (Gettysburg Campaign)
Page 550 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

Leaving Colonel Lightfoot with his regiment [the Sixth Alabama] as a guard at Martinsburg, and ordering the pioneers of the division to continue during that day and the next the destruction of the railroad, I put the division in motion for Williamsport, and arrived there by dark, after the most trying march we had yet had; most trying because of the intense heat, the character of the road, and the increased number of barefooted men in the command. Three brigades [Ramseur's, Iverson's, and Doles'], with three batteries of artillery, were ordered across the Potomac at once. It was not until this day that the troops began to exhibit unmistakable signs of exhaustion, and that stragglers could be found in the line of march, and even then none but absolutely worn-out men fell out of line. The whole march from Culpeper Court-House to Williamsport, which was an extremely rapid one, was executed in a manner highly creditable to the officers and men of the division. A halt at Williamsport was absolutely necessary from the condition of the feet of the unshod men. Very many of these gallant fellows were still marching in ranks, with feet bruised, bleeding, and swollen, and withal so cheerfully as to entitle them to be called the heroes of the Pennsylvania campaign. None but the best of soldiers could have made such a march under such circumstances. As soon as possible after arriving at Williamsport, a strong guard was placed over it, and the necessary instructions were given to General Jenkins about obtaining supplies of cattle and horses. In obedience to orders, the command remained at Williamsport during the 16th, 17th, and 18th, during which time, with the aid of General Jenkins cavalry, the commissaries and quartermasters obtained, in a proper manner, large supplies in their respective departments. The pioneers, under Captain Arthur M. Chicester, were busy during our rest here trying to destroy the aqueduct over the Conococheague. Some 5, 000 pounds of leather were bought by Major [J. G.] Paxton at Williamsport, and sent to the rear. At Hagerstown and Williamsport, 35 kegs of powder were purchased and sent back. I may as well mention here that at Williamsport, Hagerstown, Chambersburg, &tc., large quantities of such articles as were suitable for Government use were obtained by purchase or certificate, and sent back by Quartermasters Paxton, [J. D.] Rogers, and [J. A.] Harman. During the march into Pennsylvania, some 2, 000 or 3, 000 head of cattle were taken, and either appropriated for the command or sent to the rear for the other divisions. Some 1, 200 or 1, 500 were thus sent back. The horses were almost all seized by the cavalry of General Jenkins, and were rarely accounted for. My best efforts were made to suppress all irregularities, and, being very generally and cheerfully seconded by officers and men, they succeeded satisfactorily. Some few cases of fraud and [at Greencastle] some of violence to property [the latter traceable to the cavalry] were heard of. A few instances of forced purchases were reported, but never established. I believe that one quartermaster seized such articles as velvet, &tc., but could not find him out. In all cases of purchase that came before me, the parties were fully paid and satisfied. On the 17th or 18th, the lieutenant-general commanding visited my quarters, and gave me additional instructions, to the effect that the division should on the 19th resume its march, and move slowly toward Chambersburg until the division of General Johnson had crossed the Potomac. Accordingly, on the 19th it was put in motion, and proceeded to


Page 550 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 27, Part 2 (Gettysburg Campaign)
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