War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0716 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXI.

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to the importance of Maryland Heights, its being the key of the position, and the necessity of defending it?

Answer. Yes, sir. I had such a conversation with him before I determined what course I should take in relation to the command.

Question. State to the court, if you please, what he said.

Answer. The conversation grew out of a question I asked him as to his proposed plan of defense of the position. I asked him heat his plans were. He did not give me any very definite plan of operations. I think he said he had not any specific plan beyond the defense of Bolivar Heights and the bridges; that these positions being defended, Harper's Ferry was secure, and that his orders were to hold Harper's Ferry. By holding that line and the bridges, as I inferred form what he said, the place was secure. I them suggested to him whether, in case we were attacked by a greatly superior force, he did not think it would be better to hold Maryland Heights at all hazards, even if we had to withdraw the entire force there; whether the bridges could not be defended from that position as well as from the other side. He said that he did not think they could be as well; that Camp Hill best commanded the bridges and the approach from that side. He also said that there was no water that and the difficulty of getting up subsistence and artillery, and when they got there the difficulty of remaining there for want of water.

Question. Did you suggest to him, then or at any time, the fact that Bolivar Heights or Camp Hill would not be tenable if he lost Maryland Heights?

Answer. Yes, sir; that is, if the battery was gone from Maryland Heights. Without that battery, I thought it would not be tenable; with that battery, I thought it would be.

Question. Did you suggest that if Maryland Heights were abandoned that position would not be tenable?

Answer. I do not know as I said that to him in express terms; I know that was my opinion. That was the drift of the conversation, the tendency of the conversation. I do not remember to have said it in so many words, however.

Question. State, if you please, whether, in your opinion, Maryland Heights does not command Loudoun Heights.

Answer. Not where that battery was places.

Question. I do not speak of where the battery was places; but whether the heights did not, and whether an enemy occupying it would not have commanded with their guns, as soon as they could have got guns in position reach, do they not?

Answer. Yes, sir; the extreme left of our line, for instance, on bolivar Heights, was commanded by Loudoun Heights, while the guns from Maryland Heights, at least such as they had there, did not reach there.

Question. Did you, or did you not, think that Maryland Heights was, by reason of there circumstances, the commanding position of the whole place?

Answer. Unquestionably, if the guns had been on the crest of the mountain.

Question. We will always suppose that the enemy could put guns there?

Answer. I thought you were speaking of our battery.

Question. Not at all. I am speaking of the defense of Harper's Ferry; that an order is given to defend Harper's Ferry; that it could not be