War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0783 Chapter XXIV. EVACUATION OF WINCHESTER, VA.

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were emptied and sent up. The next morning-I forget the time it was, but it was some time in the forenoon-a train came down from Winchester, I think three box cars and two platform cars, and were so much loaded that the center of the cars bellied away down; loaded with a cannon on one, and a large quantity of ammunition and stuff on the other. I recollect going out by Colonel Miles' order while they were unloading. Colonel Miles ordered me to go out and tell them not to unload the ordnance stores, but, as soon as the other cars were unloaded there on the island. There was an effort made to get three or four empty cars that forenoon to go out on the Winchester road, for what purpose I do not know, but to send to General White, at Winchester, because the four cars we had were a great plenty to bring baggage and troops Colonel Miles had on the railroad. The road was in a very poor condition at that time. It was a short time after the attack was made on the Winchester train, and the road torn up. The whole track was a simple flat piece of iron nailed on the joists, and the joists were decayed along the whole road. The whole road was a very poor concern, and took eight or nine hours to get between Harper's Ferry and Winchester.

By General WHITE:

Question. I understand you to say that there was no transportation that could be sent to Winchester on the 2nd of September, for the reason that, in the first place, there were no cars; and, in the second place, if there had been any cars, there was no engine that could run over the road?

Answer. No, sir; there were three engines there-a little grasshopper engine and two large camel engines, which the road would not support.

Question. Would this grasshopper engine haul a freight train?

Answer. No, sir; only empty cars, switching around there.

Question. How long would it take, if you have any knowledge of that, to have loaded a freight train such as came up from Winchester, driven it to Harper's Ferry, and got it back to Winchester?

Answer. If we had had the cars there, it would have taken at least four hours to get to Winchester; some few hours to load them. It would have taken a day to go up and back.

Question. You do not understand my question. How long would it have taken to have run a train, loaded at Winchester, down to Harper's Ferry, unload it there, and get it back to Winchester.

Answer. You could not have got back there until the next morning. It would have taken a day and night.

Question. Do you mean by that twenty-four hours?

Answer. Yes, sir; twenty-four hours after the train could be got to Winchester, to get it back again. After I had got through hunting for the cars at Sandy Hook, it was nearly 12 o'clock or 1 o'clock at night, and Colonel Miless sent me to the telegraph office to see if it was in operation to Winchester, and I ascertained that it was not; and toward morning we got word that the enemy were coming in large force though Snicker's Gap. As there was no telegraphic communication, Colonel Miles sent out, in the forenoon, a courier to meet General White, and find him somewhere. The courier returned just previous to General White's advance, having met them somewhere near Smithville, coming in.

Question. Came out to notify me of the advance of the enemy?

Answer. Yes, sir; we had scouts out in citizen's clothing, and one came in and reported a large force coming through Snicker's Gap.

Major HUGO HILDEBRANDT, called by General White, and sworn and examined as follows:

By General WHITE:

Question. What is your position in the United States service?

Answer. I am major of the Thirty-ninth Regiment, New York State Volunteers.