War of the Rebellion: Serial 017 Page 1093 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.

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of the other two officers, he fully confirms in his several answers, in general terms, their statements as to the position and force of the enemy. He states that he say the enemy in regiments and, from all that he could observe, he judged their force in the immediate front of my column to be, during the afternoon of the 29th August from twelve to fifteen thousand men. But what is special in his testimony is the fact stated by him, that on the 29th of August, between 1 and 4 o'clock in the afternoon, he passed from the left flank of General Pope's army to the position the occupied by Colonel Marshall's regiment. He made the passage in as direct a line as he could. There was no direct road which he could take, and he went across the country. He states that it was rather rough country, partly wooded, with a number of small ravines, and that, in traversing, he found it necessary to dismount once or twice. He states positively that it was not a country through which troops, infantry and artillery, could be marched in large masses. He also states that if I, with my corps, had taken the direct route to attack the enemy, who were engaged with Pope, I must have passed over about one-third or one-half of the different ground which he traversed. He adds the confident and repeated statement that I could not have moved with my corps to make an attack on the right flank of the enemy, engaged with General Pope, without exposing my own column as it moved to the attack of the enemy formed in my front. This opinion, not given as that of a military expert, but simply as that of an intelligent eye-witness, having had every special and peculiar opportunities of personal observation, appears from that circumstance well entitled to consideration as important corroborating testimony.

In further corroboration of the testimony of Colonel Marshall and Major Hyland as to the forces and position of the enemy in my front, and as to the character of the country between my corps and Jackson's right, I refer to the testimony of General Griffin, forming with his brigade a part of General Morell's division, which was the head of my column on the 29th. He states in his examination-in-chief (page 646) [983] that, early on the afternoon of that day, he attempted to go to the right, and moved probably about 600 yards across the railroad, when he met with obstructions which he could not get through. On page 650 [984], in his examination-in-chief, he gives his testimony to the effect that any attempt on my part to attack the enemy, who were massing in front of us, on their right or rear as they were then moving, was impossible. In his cross-examination by the judge-advocate, on pages 658 and 659 [986], he testifies directly to the large force of the enemy forming a line of battle obliquely to the front of my column, and coming toward us in force from Thoroughfare Gap all the day long.

In further and final corroboration of the testimony upon this point, I refer to the evidence of General Morell, as given in his examination-in-chief, on page 581 [969]. Referring to the state of things at sundown on the 29th, he testifies as follows:

The only attack we could have made at that time would have been directly in our front. The firing of which I spoke was far to our right, and at that time we could not have got there. The troops in front of us were under cover in the woods. If we had moved forward, we would have gone over this open space. We would have been exposed to the fire of the enemy without any possibility of effectually returning it.

In reply to the question whether his force could have passed through the woods on his right in any good order to attack the enemy in that direction, he says [969]:

I doubt whether we could have got our artillery through even by daylight. We might have passed through the woods with our infantry, but not in any fighting order at all.