War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0772 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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Question. Do you know, or not, whether there was not a force of the enemy constantly around Winchester all the time we were there?

Answer. I do know that there was. I know our pickets were attacked almost every night. I do not think there was a night passed but what you directed me to detail one or more companies to re-enforce pickets. We could hear the firing upon our pickets.

Question. Were there not frequent skirmishes with parties of the enemy by parties I sent off for that purpose?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. Did you hear anything of a report on the day of the evacuation of a large force of the enemy that were approaching across the ridge, a report brought in by a Union citizen?

Answer. A Union citizen brought in a report that they were approaching us in large force, and within a few miles of us, from the way of Front Royal, and Captain Warden, of my regiment, who was out upon a scout, returned upon the day of the evacuation and reported having seen this force in front, and when he came to my headquarters I directed him to go down and report the fact to you, and I suppose you recollect his so doing.

Question. Do you recollect what estimate he placed upon the force of the enemy?

Answer. I do not. I recollect distinctly that he represented it to be a large force. I told him that it was important that he should report it at once to you, and let you have an opportunity to interrogate him. He left me, and returned shortly afterward, and said he had done so.

Captain SILAS F. RIGBY, called by the Government, and worm and examined as follows:


Question. What position have you in the military service?

Answer. I am commanding a battery, the First Independent Indiana Battery.

Question. Were you present at Winchester on the occasion of its late evacuation by General White?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. You had a command there?

Answer. Yes, sir.

Question. Are you personally acquainted with the manner in which that evacuation was made?

Answer. Nothing more than my own observation. I saw the whole of it, up till I left.

Question. Will you state to the Commission what amount of public property was destroyed there, so far as it came to your knowledge?

Answer. That I could not state properly, as there was a great portion of it in course of moving when I moved, and what was got away from there, I do not justly know. There were four siege guns that were destroyed, and some ammunition; what amount I cannot say. I was ordered to get my battery out and form on the Winchester road, and head the column to a certain place. I did so. I then went back up, and Captain Powell told me there were a couple of 20-pounder Parrott guns there, with their caissons, that they wanted saved. I went to General White, and he also told me that they should be taken along, and asked me if I could do it. I told him I could. I took the lead horses of my guns, and forge, and battery wagons, and also my extra horses; I took them out and fitted them up, and took out the two guns and formed them in my column.

Question. And carried them with you?

Answer. Yes, sir.