and wounded on the field. They carried off a large number, some ten or twelve ambulance loads of wounded.
I trust immediate action will be taken relative to this position. Under recent orders, I have sent to the rear a large quantity of ordnance and ordnance stores. I have all along contended that this place would be occupied if we abandoned it. I feel confident that they have planned this attack upon information furnished by deserters from this camp, and that they will occupy it if we leave it. The position is one which could with sufficient force be made quite strong, but the extent of ground to be occupied is too large for a small one. My first letter to you will show that I thought the force left here was too small..
Prisoners taken to-day state that the enemy had 5,000 men drawn from Huttonsville, Cheat Mountain, and other places in rear of Cheat Mountain. I will forward you a more detailed report at my earliest convenience. I am making preparations for the enemy in the event, which I do not think probable, of his renewing the attack to-morrow or at any time before we evacuate this position.
In the event of remaining here, stores must be immediately sent back. If we leave, we should do so as soon as the public property is sent back.
I am, sir, very respectfully,
Colonel C. L. STEVENSON,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Army Northwest.
CAMP ALLEGHANY, December 15, 1861.
COLONEL: I have nothing to report concerning the enemy since the battle except what I hear from prisoners. From a sergeant captured I learn that Generals Reynolds and Milroy commanded, and that the expedition was based upon information furnished them by five deserters from Hansborough's battalion, who left here about a week since. Troops were drawn from Beverly, Huttonsville, and Cheat Mountain. All that they could collect were brought up. The right was guided to our position by a traitor from Northwestern Virginia name Shipman, who is quite familiar with this country. The left was guided by a noted guide and traitor, who lived within 3 miles of this place, named Slater. We had timely warning of their approach, but could not ascertain their numbers before they made the attack. Our works had been suspended in consequence of recent orders. None had been erected before we got here.
The enemy were totally routed. I hear from citizens on the line of their retreat that they carried numbers of dead and wounded by the houses, and acknowledged that they had been badly whipped. They were heard to accuse their officers of deceiving them, insisting that our numbers were largely superior to their own. They were much demoralized, and I hope they have received a good lesson. Four additional dead bodies of the enemy were found this morning. We have 12 or 14 of their wounded, most of whom will die. Our loss has been severe, but with our small number against such odds it was not singular. The Forty-fourth Virginia came up soon after the fight. It is still here.
Immediately after the fight I ordered the transportation of stores from this place to stop, and no more trains to be sent to this place until further orders. I am strengthening my works, and I trust that something decisive will be determined upon, so that I may know what to