War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0174 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN, VA. Chapter XXIII.

Search Civil War Official Records

supplies from the depots most convenient to them. To be fully prepared to supply the army with stores for the Virginia campaign, the depot at Sandy Hook was broken up on the 25th October and re-established the same day, under Captain J. C. Read, at Berlin. A large portion of the army crossed the Potomac at this point, the remainder crossing at Harper's Ferry.

As soon as the troops commenced crossing the river a depot was established at Lovettsville, Va., and Lieutenant G. W. Chandler, Eighth Michigan Volunteers, acting commissary of subsistence, placed in charge. Captain Wilson, having previously been relieved from duty at Harper's Ferry, and directed to proceed to Alexandria for the purpose left the latter place with his force of clerks and laborers and a train of cars laden with subsistence stores November 3, and the same day established a principal depot at Manassas, from which to establish sub-depots for supplying the army when it should come sufficiently near the lines of railroad on its march from Berlin toward Warrenton, Va.

November 6 Captain Wilson opened a depot at Thoroughfare Gap. He closed it the same day, and the next day established depots at White Plains and Salem. The grade of the railroad being heavy, and the track in bad condition, it was impossible to transport more than a limited amount of stores to the depots just named. That any reached them in season was mainly due to the energy and perseverance of Captain Wilson and his assistants. They were broken up, and the grand depot established at Gainesville on the 8th, from which point and Manassas [the stores being forwarded promptly by railroad from the depot at Alexandria] the army was supplied until depots were established at Warrenton and Warrenton Junction, November 10 and 11. Lieutenant-Colonel Porter was left in charge of all the subsistence depots on the line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. As soon as the troops had advanced into Virginia and ceased to draw stores from Lovettsville and Berlin, in compliance with directions given him he had the stores then remaining at those depots removed to Harper's Ferry, and, in addition, sent from Frederick City sufficient to make an aggregate of 600,000 rations at the former place.

Leaving at Frederick City a month's supply for the troops and hospitals there and in that vicinity, the balance of the stores were reshipped from that depot to Alexandria. Lieutenant-Colonel Porter also prepared with his party to proceed to the same place, to be in readiness for further duty with the army. Captains Wodward and Murphy, with their herds of beef cattle, followed closely the army into Virginia, having the same relation to the troops and to each other that they had in the campaign of Maryland.

November 2 a large herd of beef cattle, held in readiness on the south side of the Potomac, moved forward in charge of Captain M. R. Came, commissary of subsistence of volunteers, in the direction of Manassas and Gainesville to meet the army. It arrived in good season, and other herds were subsequently received in a like manner.

During the Maryland campaign and the march of the army into Virginia the department had to depend altogether upon its own resources to unload and reload its stores at the depots and to perform other necessary duties foreign to it.

Major-General McClellan was relieved from the command of the Army of the Potomac at Rectortown, Va., November 7, 1862.

Throughout the campaigns of the Peninsula, Maryland, and Virginia, no complaint of moment against the subsistence department reached