consulting with Colonel Ford. He left between 11 and 12 o'clock without directly ordering Colonel Ford to evacuate the heights, but instructing him, in case he was compelled to do so, to spike his guns and throw the heavy siege guns down the mountain. About 2 o'clock, perhaps a little later, by order of Colonel Ford, the heights were abandoned, the guns being spiked according to instructions.
On Sunday, Colonel D'Utassy sent over to the Maryland Heights four companies, under Major Wood, who brought off without opposition four brass 12-pounders, two of which were imperfectly spiked, and also a wagon-load of ammunition.
General White, on his return to Harper's Ferry on the 12th of September, suggested to Colonel Miles the propriety of contracting his lines on Bolivar Heights so as to make a better defense; but Colonel Miles adhered to his original line of defense, stating that he was determined to make his stand on Bolivar Heights. General White also urged the importance of holding Maryland Heights, even should it require the taking the entire force over there from Harper's Ferry. Colonel Miles, under his orders to hold Harper's Ferry to the last extremity, while admitting the importance of Maryland Heights, seemed to regard them as applying to the town of Harper's Ferrry, and held that to leave Harper's Ferry even to go on Maryland Heights would be disobeying his instructions.
General McClellan established his headquarters at Frederick City on the morning of the 13th of September.
On the night of the 13th, after the evacuation of Maryland Heights, Colonel Miles directed Captain (now Major) Russell, of the Maryland cavalry, to take with him a few men and endeavor to get through the enemy's lines and reach some of our forces, General McClellan if possible, and to report the condition of Harper's Ferry; that it could not hold out more than forty-eight hours unless re-enforced, and to urge the sending of re-enforcements. Captain Russell reached General McClellan's headquarters at Frederick at 9 a. m. on Sunday, the 14th of September, and reported as directed by Colonel Miles. Immediately upon his arrival, General McClellan sent off a messenger, as Captain Russell understood, to General Franklin. At 10 a. m. Captain Russell left for General Franklin's command, with a communication to General Franklin from General McClellan. He reached General Franklin about 3 o'clock that afternoon, and found him engaged with the enemy at Crampton's Gap. The enemy was driven from the gap, and the next morning, the 15th, General Franklin passed through the gap, advancing about a mile, and, finding the enemy drawn up in line of battle in his front, drew his own forces up in line of battle. While there stationed, the cannonading in the direction of Harper's Ferry, which had been heard very distinctly all the morning, Harper's Ferry being about 7 miles distant, suddenly ceased; whereupon General Franklin sent word to General McClellan of the probable surrender of Harper's Ferry by Colonel Miles, and did not deem it necessary to proceed farther in that direction.
The battle of South Mountain was fought on Sunday, the 14th, and on the same day, during the afternoon, the enemy at Harper's Ferry attacked the extreme left of the line on Bolivat Heights, but, after some time, were repulsed by the troops under the command of General White. On Sunday night the cavalry at Harper's Ferry made their escape, under Colonel Davis, of the Twelfth Illinois Cavalry,* by permission of Colonel Miles, and reached Greencastle, Pa., the next morning, capturing on their way
* Colonel B. F. Davis, Eighth New York Cavalry, was the officer meant, and he was brevetted for this service. (See pp. 583, 629, 758, 775, and Part II, pp. 305, 306.)