War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0578 OPERATIONS IN N. VA.,W. VA.,MD.,AND PA. Chapter XXXI.

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Question. Were you present when the first interview took place between Colonel Miles and Colonel Ford after the evacuation of Maryland Heights?

Answer. I was not; I do not know where it did take place.

Question. How long after the evacuation before you saw Colonel Ford?

Answer. I did not see Colonel Ford again until I met him at Annapolis; I did not see him after he left Maryland Heights. I had some occasion to visit his regiment with orders, but I did not see him. I understood he was quite indisposed. In fact, he was all the time he was on Maryland Heights.

Question. How long before the evacuation took place were you yourself last on the heights?

Answer. About four hours; we were there between 8 and 9 o'clock, and the evacuation took place a little after 1 o'clock.

Question. Did Colonel Ford them hold the same opinion in regard to his ability to maintain his position?

Answer. No, sir; he represented that if he could have one or two more regiments he could hold it, but, as it was, the enemy were forcing him back. He expressed some little doubt in regard to being able to hold it.

Question. What is your judgment as to the necessity for making the evacuation at the time it occurred?

Answer. In my opinion it was very precipitate. I was on Bolivar Heights at Camp Hill for three or four hours afterward, and there were no indications of the enemy until nearly sundown.

Question. The enemy did not occupy the position he abandoned for many hours afterward?

Answer. From that time until we left Harper's Ferry I did not see the enemy near the battery. The enemy threw some sharpshooters down on the extreme point of Maryland Heights, and fired at our headquarters in the Ferry. There was no enemy visible in and around the battery where the trees had been felled.

By the COURT:

Question. You say that at the last interview between Colonel Miles and Colonel Ford, Colonel Ford expressed some doubt as to his ability to hold the place unless he was re-enforced?

Answer. He did.

Question. What reply did Colonel Miles make?

Answer. His reply was that he would send them another regiment if he could spare it from the front. He had been attacked in front, and expected an attack along the whole line. If he could spare a regiment without weakening his front too much, he said he would do so.

Question. Did he leave any discretion with Colonel Ford as to falling back if he was overpowered, or anything of the kind?

Answer. He remarked to Colonel Ford that he could hold the heights, and that be must. I did not hear him make any remark in regard to the evacuation in any shape. After Colonel Miles had left Maryland Heights on Saturday, he went upon Camp Hill to place some guns there, which were under Colonel Ward. He then came back to his headquarters, and wrote an order or a note to Colonel Ford, stating that since leaving his position there and coming to Camp Hill he could see that the position was much more defensible, covered as it was by the guns at Camp Hill, than it appeared when at his station on Maryland Heights, and again telling him that he could hold the position and must hold it.

Question. Do you know whether Colonel Ford ever received that order?