War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0787 Chapter XXIV. EVACUATION OF WINCHESTER, VA.

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post was conducted in a proper or an improper manner, in your judgment, and whether proper efforts, all efforts, were made to save Government property, so far as the transportation would convey it, and, generally, the manner of conducting the movement.

Answer. I have to state that I was laid up at that time, and received orders at about 3 p. m. I was lying in town. Major Hildebrandt, who had command of the regiment, informed me that, about an hour before, orders came to prepare everything for a probable evacuation at night. I left, as a matter of course, immediately; came up, found everything preparing; the quartermaster's goods packing; the commissary stores packing, &c. At about 5 o'clock, I believe, I saw General White, and asked him about it. The following remark I remember, "General, you promised us a fight here; shall we have again to abandon the place?" He replied in words to about this effect, "The first duty of a soldier is to obey, and we must leave; I have peremptory orders from the War Department." I saw several other persons about it, and they all heard the same thing from General White. At about 10 o'clock, if I am not mistaken, I saw him again, and he told me that in about a half an hour we should leave, and even gave me orders to have some Sibley tents taken off, for which, however, I had not transportation enough, and they were left there and destroyed. All my ammunition, arms, quartermaster's stores, and commissary stores belonging to the regiment-I remember that we had got out at that time seven days' rations-they were all save. We started somewhere near 11 o'clock-it was a very clear night-and marched in tolerable good order and shape down to the main street, or main road, leading out toward Martinsburg; there we were formed in regular order, the Thirty-ninth leading.

Question. I do not care about the order of march. Was proper regard had to order, and the saving the property?

Answer. Yes, sir; I think, with the exception of one regiment, who had not teams, all the regiments saved all that belonged to them.

Question. Did you, or not, hear me say anything in reference to delaying the movement as long as I dared to, in conformity with my orders, for the purpose of getting further instructions?

Answer. Yes, sir; I remember that in that same conversation which I mentioned you told me it was possible, if the wires were not cut, that we should get another order. I saw your telegraph operator somewhere about a quarter of an hour, or half an hour, before starting, and told me, "Nothing new."


Question. You know nothing about how much public property was destroyed there?

Answer. I know of four guns of heavy caliber, the four pivot guns, which were


Question. How much ammunition?

Answer. Of ammunition, there must have been a pretty considerable amount, judging only from the flash which was visible, I should suppose, between 1 and 2 o'clock the next day, about two or three hours after we had left.

The Commission then adjourned to 11 a. m. on Monday next.

WASHINGTON, D. C., October 20, 1862.

The Commission met pursuant to adjournment.

* * * * * * *

The Commission resumed the investigation of the circumstances attending the evacuation of Winchester by General White.

CHARLES H. LOUNSBURY, called by General White, and sworn and examined as follows:

By General WHITE:

Question. State to the court, if you please, what your position is in the military service of the United States.