dark and proceeded toward Winchester. We halted 7 miles from Winchester, and were sent forward to the front where the roads connect, found we were cut off, and altered our course to another road parallel with the pike, and came within 3 miles of Winchester.
About 9 a.m. Sunday morning I halted the column and train, and went to the rear of Winchester with the adjutant of the Fifth New York Cavalry, and found our forces had retreated toward Martinsburg and the rebels in possession of Winchester, and we again cut off from connecting with our forces. Our column was again ordered to retire and proceed toward Martinsburg by way of the Middle road to within 5 miles of Martinsburg, and sent forward and ascertained that we were again cut off. I then consulted with Colonel De Forest and his officers, and concluded to cross the mountain and go to Hancock, Md., which place we made by marching all night, and arrived at Hancock on Monday at 11.30 a.m.; then employed the boats and crossed the train and men in safety, remaining till dawn on Tuesday, the 28th, losing in our retreat 1 man wounded and 4 missing and my battery wagon abandoned; also 1 wagon loaded with ordnance stores, and 4 mules, harness, and camp equipage.
Your obedient servant,
R. B. HAMPTON,
Captain, Commanding Artillery.
Commanding First Division, Fifth Corps.
Numbers 25. Report of Lieutenant James H. Peabody, Battery M, First New York Light Artillery, of operations May 23-25.
CAMP NEAR WILLIAMSPORT.
SIR: In obedience to orders I submit the following report:
On the evening of the 23rd one section, under Lieutenant Woodbury, was ordered to report to Colonel Kenly on the road to Front Royal. By some means he missed Colonel Kenly, and narrowly escaped running into the enemy's line. He then retired for the night and encamped beyond Centreville. Having no escort, his position was rather critical. He was rejoined in the morning by Colonel Murphy, with Twenty-ninth Pennsylvania Regiment; made a reconnaissance up the road about 3 miles and then retreated, as the enemy was in force.
At 11 o'clock on the evening of the 23rd the balance of the battery was ordered out and the baggage sent to the rear. One baggage wagon being absent, I was compelled to load the three on hand very heavy.
Sixty spades, twenty-five pickaxes, and ten axes left in my charge were loaded up and brought forward.
About 9 o'clock on the morning of the 24th the column moved forward. Our battery was called into action by sections several times during the day. One skirmish, very creditable to all engaged, occurred near Newtown just at dusk, under Lieutenant Hodgkins. Lieutenant Hodgkins was wounded at this time, narrowly escaping with his life, and from reliable information the enemy had one gun dismounted at this engagement.