War of the Rebellion: Serial 017 Page 0983 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.

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Question. Please state your grounds for that conclusion.

Answer. I think if we had started just at daylight that morning, we would have arrived at Bristoe Station, if the road had been clear, even sooner than we did by starting at 3 o'clock in the morning; for we would have made use of the two hours of daylight that we were lying in the road. I mean by that, of course, that I think if we had started by daylight, we would have left camp properly, and would not have had the stoppages that we had.

Question. On the morning of the 29th of August, do you know of dispositions having been made to place your command and other parts of General Porter's corps in order for battle?

Answer. On the morning of the 29th, we marched from Bristoe Station to Manassas Junction. My brigades was leading the division, and following Syke's division. We halted at Manassas about a half an hour, when I received an order to countermarch, and proceed in the direction of Gainesville. After finding the direction, I moved on the road pointed out to me toward Gainesville. I had marched about 2 miles, having passed King's division in the road, when a cavalry man, said, "Look out; a trooper has been taken here, just in front a short distance." I asked him what forces were in front. He said none, except it was a few mounted men. I halted my brigade, threw four companies of the Sixty-second Pennsylvania to the front, with directions to move on in advance about half a mile, throwing out flankers to the side and skirmishers to the front.

Question. About what hour of the day was this?

Answer. We left Manassas Junction, I should think, about 9 o'clock in the morning.

Question. Go on and state what then occurred.

Answer. I then moved on until we came to cleared place, where our skirmishers commenced firing with the enemy's pickets, probably 5 miles from Manassas Junction. At this point General Porter rode up, and we halted. I also ordered the other eight companies of the Sixty-second Pennsylvania to the front to support those that were already out as skirmishers. This regiment has twelve companies. General Porter then called together General Morell, General Butterfield, and myself. I think we all got off our horses. He said, "I have a communication to read to you." He then read us a communication, I do not know by whom signed, but it was from General Pope-that is, I have always supposed it was, and understood it to be read as a communication from General Pope. We then went back to the rear on a hill, say 300 yards distant. A battery, I believe, was placed in position there. We were there some time, when General McDowell rode up. General McDowell and General Porter went off to the right of where we stood, and held a conversation, and cannot tell anything about that. I think there was a map taken out. After the conversation, General McDowell rode to the right. I received an order, almost directly after General McDowell had left, to recall my pickets, and orders to move my command to the right. I attempted to go to the right, and moved probably 600 yards, until, with the head of my column, I crossed a railroad said to run to Gainesville. Here we mat with obstructions which we could not get through. It was reported by somebody, I cannot say who, "You can't get through there." We then faced about, and moved back to the hill where the battery I first referred to was stationed. As we were getting to this hill, the enemy's batteries opened upon us. My brigade was then placed in position in rear and to the right of the batteries, and remained there during considerable artillery firing; I cannot say how long. The disposition was certainly one to repel an attack. It was a very good position for that purpose.

Question. Do you remember the general character of that communication which was read to you by General Porter?

Answer. I can state my recollection of it. The communication, as I recollect it, was to this effect: that the troops would try to make a junction at Gainesville; but, although they might get to Gainesville, it might be necessary, before morning or that night, to fall back to Centreville on account of rations.

Question. To whom was the communication directed?

Answer. General Porter the communication as coming from General Pope. I supposed it was addressed to General Porter from General Pope. I did not read it, and I could not swear positively that it was read correctly.

Question. From about 5 o'clock to about 7 o'clock of that afternoon,