War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0635 Chapter XXXI. THE MARYLAND CAMPAIGN.

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In connection with the Maryland Heights matter, it might be proper for me to state that about half an hour after Colonel Miles called upon me, General White, in company with Colonel Trimble, also called. The general asked me if I had got any orders. I said that I had; that I was not going to the heights, but was under orders to report to Colonel D'Utassy, for service in the First Brigade. General White said that he was very much disappointed; that he thought the regiment could have been used to better purpose elsewhere, and he added that it was his intention to have gone with us. I told him that I was anxious to go, and asked him to countermand the order. He turned to Colonel Trimble, and said that he believed it would be best for him not to do it; that he did not wish to countermand the order. He said he was sorry; that it was not the service that he wished to see the regiment engaged in.


Question. Any statement that you desire to make bearing upon that evacuation, or the necessity for it, or the absence of such necessity, will be pertinent to the inquiry.

Answer. On Sunday evening I called upon Colonel D'Utassy, who was in command of the First Brigade. I told him I was afraid the place was going to be taken. I spoke of the want of confidence in Colonel Miles; of the shortness, almost exhaustion, of the ammunition; of the general impression that seemed to reign through the place that Harper's Ferry would fall, and suggested to him that we ought to make an effort to leave. He said that he was as willing to do so as I was, but could not leave without orders. I desired him to apply for such orders. He subsequently informed me that he had done so, but that Colonel Miles would not, on any account, permit us to evacuate. In the night time, while I was with my regiment, I saw the enemy on Maryland Heights, enfilading us. They were actively engaged all Sunday night. I called on Colonel D'Utassy again, at 3 o'clock on Monday morning, and told him what Captain Philips and Captain Von Sehlen had informed me-that their ammunition was almost gone; that the enemy had been actively employed through the night changing the position of their batteries and placing batteries in a position that would place us in a very perilous situation; and I again proposed to him that unless we could hold the place we ought then to make an effort to get away; that there was still time, as it was then about 3 o'clock in the morning. I told him that he might take his brigade without leave if not with it, and I would join the fortunes of my regiment to his and share with him the responsibility. Colonel D'Utassy desired me to see Colonel Miles and General White, and thought it was important the matter should be talked over further. I told him I would have to go back to my regiment; that I could not leave it. I understood that Captain Philips and Captain Von Sehlen did call upon Colonel Miles or General White. I believe that is all that I have to state.

Question. Have you any doubt at all that the troops could have evacuated the Ferry and effected their escape?

Answer. I thought so, or I should not have made the proposition to leave.

Question. Did you regard the undertaking even as one of extreme peril?

Answer. No, sir; I did not. I thought the chances were very strongly in favor of our making our escape.

Question. Did you understand from any quarter upon what grounds Colonel Miles resisted this proposition which was urged upon him, to evacuate?

Answer. As I said before, he seemed to be thoroughly stupefied, and talked inconsistently. One time he led me to suppose, by his conservation, that the place cold not be held; and at another time, as I was informed by Colonel D'Utassy, he gave as a reason for not permitting us to leave that the place must be held.

Question. You say you were three months with him previously?

Answer. Three months under him.

Question. Did you observe these peculiar characteristics during that time-this confusion of mind, insensibility, stupidity you speak of, or only during the siege of Harper's Ferry?

Answer. I noticed it before, but supposed it was more the peculiarities of the man than anything else. It was chiefly by correspondence that I had any intercourse with him.