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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 323 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CHAMPAIGN.

unfordable, and the pontoon bridge left a Falling Waters had been partially destroyed by the enemy. The wounded and prisoners were sent over the river as rapidly as possible in a few ferry-boats, while the trans awaited the subsiding of the waters and the construction of a new pontoon bridge. On July 8, the enemy's cavalry advanced toward Hagerstown, but was repulsed by General Stuart, and pursued as far as Boonsborough. With this exception, nothing but occasional until the 12th, when the main body of the enemy arrived. The army then took a position previously selected, covering the Potomac from Williamsport to Falling Waters, where it remained for two days, with the enemy immediately in front, manifesting no disposition to attack, but throwing up entrenchments along is whole line. By the 13th, the river at Williamsport, though still deep, was fordable, and a good bridge was completed at Falling Waters, new boats having being constructed an some of the old recovered. As further delay would enable the enemy to obtain re-enforcements, and as it was found difficult to procure a sufficient supply of flour for the troops, the working of the mills being interrupted by high water, it was determined to await an attack no longer. Orders were accordingly given to cross the Potomac that night, Ewell's corp by the ford an Williamsport, and those of Longstreet and Hill of the bridge. The cavalry was directed to relieve the infantry skirmishers, and bring up the rear. The movement was much retarded by a severe rain storm and the darkness of the night. Ewell's corps by the ford at Williamsport, and those of Longstreet and Hill on the bridge. The cavalry was directed to relieve the infantry the skirmishers, and bring up the rear. The movement was much retarded by a severe rain storm and the darkness of the night. Ewell's corps, having the advantage of a turnpike road, marched with less difficulty, and crossed the river by 8 o'clock the flowing morning. The condition of the road to the bridge an the time consumed in the passage of the artillery, ammunition wagons, and ambulances, which could not ford the river, so much delayed the progress of:Longstreet and Hill, that it was daylight before their troops began to cross. Heth's division was halted about a mile and a half from the bridge, to protect the passage of the column. No interruption was offered by the enemy until about 11. a. m., when his cavalry, supported by artillery, appeared in front of General Heth. A small number in advance of the main body was mistaken for our own cavalry retiring, no notice having been given of the withdraw of the latter, and was suffered to approach our lines. They were immediately destroyed or captured, with the exception of two or three 'but Brigadier-General Pettigrew, an officer of great meritand promise, was mortally wounded in the encounter. He survived his removal to Virginia only a few days. The bridge being clear, General Heth began to withdraw. The enemy advanced, but enforce to break our lines were repulsed, and the passage of the river was completed by 1. p. m. Owing to the extent of General Heth; s line, some of his men most remote from the bridge were cut off before they could reach it, but the greater part of those taken by the enemy during the movement(supposed to amount it all to about 500)consisted of men from various commands who lingered behind, overcome by previous labors and hardships, and the fatigue of a most trying night march. Three was no loss of material excepting a few broken wagons and two pieces of artillery, which the horses were unable to draw trough the deep mud. Other


Page 323 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CHAMPAIGN.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 27, Part 2 (Gettysburg Campaign)
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