War of the Rebellion: Serial 005 Page 0210 Chapter XIV. OPERATIONS IN MD., N. VA., AND W. VA.

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volleys fired by the enemy into the side of the mountain, where our skirmishers were safely located behind rocks and trees. After several hundred shots were exchanged the firing of the enemy became irregular, and a dense fog having raised in the mean time, it ceased.

The enemy evidently intended to march through the pass. Their loss must have been considerable at this point. Our skirmishers, being well protected, suffered no injury. The men who were supporting the howitzer remained in position all night, expecting an attack and feeling confident of defending the pass against an attack from ten times their number.

At 8.30 a. m. Lieutenant McDonald brought me your order "to march my command to a point between the brigade and Romney, and hold myself in readiness to march to Hanging Rock Pass, from which point the enemy was advancing in large numbers, and that you expected the principal attack from that direction." I called in my skirmishers and marched to the positions indicated. In the course of an hour or two the enemy was seen in the road to Mechanicsburg Pass. I then directed Captain Bowen, by your order, to take position with his company and Captain Miller's, and with the assistance of the howitzer to dispute the passage of the brigade and fort. The enemy then opened fire upon us from a cannon in the road on the mountain side, above the brigade, but without injury to us.

I then received your ordered to march to the support of captain Myers and Jordan, against whom were advancing an overwhelming force from the direction of Hanging Rock Pass. I marched the companies of Captain Winfield, Harper, Sheetz, and Shands with the utmost speed. Within half a mile of town I met the 4-pounder cannon, and directed the officer in charge of it to advance and take a position which I would designate. Meeting afterwards Captain Myers, he informed me of the estimated strength of the enemy, who were but a short distance down the road, but concealed by a hill, and although they outnumbered us six or seven times, I determined to give them a fight, and proceeded to select my ground to meet their approach. Having done this to my satisfaction, I awaited them. Reconnoitering parties of the enemy were in the mean tim-visible on the ridge a mile and a half in front of us.

In a short time the glistening of guns could be seen in the underwood which covered the before-mentioned ridge, moving in the direction of the Winchester road, distance about 3 miles. I saw at once that the object of the movement was either to take possession of the narrow pass or the Winchester road, adjacent to town, or to make a feint in that direction, which a view to drawing off part of our force from the position we held. I ordered Captain Sheetz to move rapidly with his company by the way of the Winchester road, to advance upon them, and to skirmish them in front. I also ordered the train which I understood had been ordered up the Winchester road to the point which was now threatened to move farther up the road. I also ordered Captain Winfield to skirmish on their right

flank, and watch and report their movement. Captain Winfield promptly executed my order, and soon commenced skirmishing them.

I a short time Lieutenant Pennybacker rode back rapidly with a message from Captain Winfield, informing me that the enemy were advancing in a large body toward the Winchester road, and would soon reach it if not attack. I immediately ordered Captains Jordan, Myers, and Harper to the point on the Winchester road at which I expected the enemy would enter it. I also ordered the officer commanding the 4-pounder to march with us with his gun. I marched