War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0818 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., M.D, AND PA.

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the latter Lieutenant-Colonel Young and Captain G. J. Wright, all of whom acted with remarkable gallantry.

General Hampton then drew near the gap, when Colonel Munford, mistaking his command for a portion of the enemy's cavalry, ordered his artillery to open upon him. This order was on the point of being executed, when Hampton, becoming aware of his danger, exhibited a white flag and thus averted this serious misfortune. Hampton's brigade remained at the gap for the night.

Next morning, upon my arrival, finding that the enemy had made no demonstration toward Crampton's Gap up to that time, and apprehending that he might move directly from Frederick to Harper's Ferry, I deemed it prudent to leave Munford to hold this point until he could be re-enforced with infantry, and moved Hampton nearer the Potomac. General McLaws was advised of the situation of affairs, and sent Brigadier General Howell Cobb with his command to hold Crampton Gap. General Hampton's command was halted at the south end of south Mountain, and pickets sent out on the roads toward Point of Rocks and Frederick. I proceeded, myself, to the headquarters of General McLaws, to acquaint him with the the situation of affairs, and also to acquaint myself with what was going on. I went with him him to the Maryland Heights, overlooking Harper's Ferry, which had not yet fallen. I explained to him the location of the roads in that vicinity, familiar to myself from my connection with the John Brown raid, and repeatedly urged the importance of his holding with an infantry picket the road leading from the Ferry by the Kennedy farm toward Sharpsburg; failing to do which, the entire cavalry force of the enemy at the Ferry, amounting to about 500, escaped during the night by that very road, and inflicted serious damage on General Longstreet's train in the course of their flight.

I had ordered Colonel Munford to take command (as the senior officer) at Crampton's Gap, and hold it against the enemy at all hazards. Colonel Munford gave similar instructions to the officers commanding the two fragments of infantry regiments from Mahone's brigade, then present, and posted the infantry behind a stone wall at the eastern base of the mountain. [R. P.] Chew's battery and a section of navy howitzers, belonging to the Portsmouth Battery, were placed on the slope of the mountain, and the whole force of cavalry at his command dismounted and disposed on the flanks as sharpshooter. The enemy soon advanced with overpowering numbers to assail the position, his force in sight amounting to a division (Slocum's) of infantry. They were received with a rapid and steady fire from our batteries, but continued to advance, preceded by their sharpshooters, and an engagement ensued between these and our infantry and dismounted cavalry. Colonel Parham, commanding Mahone's brigade, soon after arrived with the Sixth and Twelfth Virginia Infantry, scarcely numbering in all 300 men, and this small force at least three hours maintained their position and held the enemy in check without assistance of any description from General Semmes, who (Colonel Munford reports) held the next gap below and witnessed all that took place. General Cobb finally came with two regiments to the support of the force holding the gap. At this request Colonel Munford posted the new regiment, when the infantry which had been engaged, having exhausted their ammunition, fell back from their position. The enemy took advantage of this circumstances and suddenly advanced, and the fresh regiments broke before they were well in position. General Cobb made great efforts to rally them, but without the least effect, and it was evident that the gap could no longer be held. Under these circumstances Colonel Munford (whose artillery had ex-