War of the Rebellion: Serial 040 Page 0554 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.

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lost, and the wagons were in constant requisition during the three days the corps remained in the position at Banks' Ford. It then returned to its previous camps, and the train rejoined the divisions. The wagons were exposed at Banks' Ford to the artillery fire of the enemy, but no damage of any consequence was caused, and they were removed from danger without confusion.

Previous to the march, the troops had been supplied, as directed by orders from the headquarters of the army, with eight days' rations, carrying prescribed portions in the knapsacks. They also carried a blanket, shirt, pair of stockings, pair of drawers, half of a shelter-tent, and 60 rounds of ammunition. The average weight carried by the men is estimated at from 56 to 60 pounds. The supply wagons were loaded with from three to five days' rations and eight days' short forage. The ammunition wagons also carried eight days' forage. The average weight upon these wagons was 2,000 pounders. The wagons were, of course, inadequate to carry the accumulated quantity of forage ordered to be kept on hand, but it was brought up to the various parks as opportunity permitted. As fast as suppliers were exhausted, they were replenished from the depots at Falmouth, so that when the movement was completed the quartermaster's department was as well prepared for a march as at the beginning . All the transportation was in good and efficient condition, and no animals were lost excepting those noticed above as captured.

The number of rounds of ammunition carried in wagons and on pack-mules was 140; of these, the pack-mules carried two boxes each. The pack-mules also carried as much forage as could be properly loaded upon them. Two hundred and eighty-five pack-mules were used for ammunition, and 153 for forage and baggage. Their average load was over 220 pounds.

I think it is generally considered by officers in this corps that a partial use of pack-mules is advantageous; that a number of mules not connected with the regular trains should be allotted to the staff and regimental officers for transporting their necessary baggage. For this purpose a portion of the saddles should be provided with panniers.

The use of mules for transporting ammunition is not advantageous. Probably no occasion can arise when more difficulties will occur in the use of wagons for supplying ammunition than were presented in the recent movement of this corps, yet at no time, had the dependence been on wagons alone, would there have been a deficiency. The ammunition galls the mules, overweighs them, so that an abandonment of the forage for their own supply is necessary, and deranges the trains. A modification of the system adopted would, I think, be beneficial. Each ammunition wagon might carry a couple of saddles, so that boxes might be forwarded to the front when necessary.

I believe it is generally considered that the troops can march with more ease having their shelter-tent and underclothing rolled in their blankets and looped over the shoulder than with knapsacks. These can only bee necessary if they are used for carrying reasons, the transportation of which might be better preformed by pack-mules when an extra supply for a hasty movement is required. In simple marching, without conflict, troops can carry rations for eight days, but in an engagement they must necessarily abandon a considerable portion of their burdens (as was the case in the movements of this corps) and rely upon the supply trains for subsistence.

No accurate statement of the number of knapsacks and the amount of clothing lost can be made. Requisitions have been submitted for