Numbers 3. Reports of Colonel Jacob M. Campbell, Fifty-fourth Pennsylvania Infantry, of the capture of Union forces at Little Cacapon Bridge and Paw Paw Tunnel, October 4.
HDQRS. FIFTY-FOURTH Regiment PENNSYLVANIA VOLS.
Sir John's Run, Va., October 9, 1862.
GENERAL: I have to report that, on the morning of the 4th instant, at 6 o'clock the enemy, with a force of about 900 (supposed to be under the command of Colonel Imboden, and from Romney) composed of infantry, cavalry, and one piece of artillery, made an attack on Company K, Fifty-fourth of Pennsylvania Volunteers Captain Newhard, at Little Bridge. Seven men of Company K were wounded, when the company surrendered. The enemy set fire to the bridge (a temporary trestle-work) and cut the telegraph wire, and then proceeded to Paw Paw, 3 miles distant, where Company B, Captain Hite, was stationed. The whole rebel force immediate surrounded them on all sides, when, deeming resistance useless, that company surrendered.
Finding the telegraph deranged, I took a party off 20 men, in an engine, from this post, and proceeded up the railroad to within 5 miles of Paw Paw. Learinig there what had taken place and that the enemy were coming down the road, I ran the train up to Numbers 12 water station, and immediately ordered the detachment of Company E (30 men), at that post, aboard the train, and started down the road, taking up a detachment of 30 men of Company H, stationed at Orleans road, on the way. I put off the detachment of Company E at Great Cacapon Bridge, and brought the detachment of Company H to this post.
About 11 o'clock on Sunday night (5th instant) I learned that an attack on my post opposite Hancock and on the Great Cacapon Bridge (5 miles above this place) was contemplated by the enemy. I immediately withdrew my force from Cherry Run to the post opposite Hancock, and brought the force from Great Cacapon Bridge to this post uniting it with the force here. I marched out the Bath road, placing my force between the bridge and the road the enemy would have to travel to get to it.
On Monday, the 6th instant, a force of rebel cavalry came down the Winchester road, toward Bath. At the same time, an infantry force advanced, by the Martinsburg road, toward the same point. From some cause, the cavalry, halted about 8 miles from here and precipitately returned going to Pughtown, I believe. The infantry fell back about the same time toward Hedgesville, since which I have no positive information concerning them, but have been told by a citizen that they are encamped on Dr. Hammond's farm, near North Mountain Station. I have ordered out a scouting party to-day in that neighborhood, and will endeavor to find out their position and numbers.
The cavalry, under Captain Langholz, sent to me, have been of no service whatever, as he has not executed any order given him by me. On last Sunday night (5th instant) when cavalry would have been of great service to my command, he crossed the river, at Sleepy Creek into Maryland, without orders, and I heard nothing of him or his command until yesterday morning (8th instant), when he came here (having left his command in Williamsport) with a request from Colonel Voss, of the Twelfth Illinois Cavalry, that he be relieved from duty here. As his command was already gone and as General Averell had cavalry, I assented to the request of Colonel Voss.