War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0609 Chapter XXXI. THE MARYLAND CAMPAIGN.

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Question. In whose name did he order you?

Answer. He told me to halt and let my men rest, and said to me in a whisper, so that the men should not hear, that the order was to go off the mountain, to evacuate the mountain, but that he had not received it officially. I halted and gave the order to rest and the men sat down on the rocks. In about twenty minutes he came back and said that we were to evacuate the mountain, and he wanted no confusion; we must go quietly and in order. I do not know as he said it was by the order of Colonel Ford. I believe he expressed it in this manner: That Colonel Ford did not want any damned rout or noise about it; that he wanted everything in order. I called my regiment to an attention; gave the order to about face; then filed down on this road by the left flank, and closed up. They were in one and two ranks on this path; wherever they could double they did. I halted the left of the regiment when I thought we had gone a sufficient distance on this wide road to allow my regiment to close up. They closed up in four ranks, and we moved down to McGrath's battery. I was acquainted with Captain McGrath; we were formerly captains in the same regiment. When I got there I halted the regiment in the works. I found Captain McGrath dismantling his guns. I rode up and spoke to him. There was nothing said, however, about the evacuation. Colonel Ford then came and rode at the head of my men with me down off the mountain. I think likely I was the first regiment. I did not see any other regiment ahead of me, that left the mountain as a regiment. When I got down on to the canal, or near the lock (I had eight companies on the hill; two of my companies had been detailed as pickets the day before), I met these two companies coming over, or standing at an order arms. I ordered them to fall into their places in the line, and they marched over with me to our position that we occupied on Bolivar Heights, and had occupied for a week or so.

By the COURT:

Question. You had only eight companies with you on Maryland Heights?

Answer. That was all.

Question. Can you name the officers, if any, who remained at the breastworks after the men retreated without orders?

Answer. I had forgotten one thing. I think Lieutenant-Colonel Downey, if I remember right, came up while we were there during the last fight we had with the rebels. He came up with about 250 or 300 men; it was pretty hard to judge how many. They came up under the fire in this path leading through the woods, and it was so narrow and so rough that the men could not come in any order at all. They were compelled to go along singly, as they could. He came up just as the firing commenced; came up under the fire, and deployed his men along the works wherever they could get in to assist. I was not acquainted with my officers much; they were all strangers to me mostly. I knew none of the Thirty-second Ohio, for I had never seen a man of them, except Captain Hibbets, and him I only saw the night before. I do not remember of any officer, unless it was the captain of Company B, of our regiment. He was on the right with me. His name is Aikins; I cannot tell his first name.

Question. That does not have anything to do with the question, I think.

Answer. You wanted to know what officers remained. That is the officer I speak of. I was on the extreme right of the line nearly, on a ledge of rocks which run back at right angles to the line of battle. That was nearly our extreme right. The mountain then started from there and ran right down pretty steep.

Question. You do not recollect any officers that remained?

Answer. They all nearly went together.

Question. All ran off with the men?

Answer. They tried to stop the men; but in the confusion it was hard to tell.


Question. It was hard to tell whether they were running with the men or trying to stop them?