War of the Rebellion: Serial 044 Page 0103 Chapter XXXIX. The Gettysburg Campaign.

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Captain F. W. Alexander, a witness called by the court, being duly sworn, says:

By the Judge-advocate:

Question. What position did you hold under Major-General Milroy at Winchester during the fight at, and evacuation of, that place, on or about the 1st of June, 1863?

Answer. I was attached to the Third Brigade, Second Devision, Eight Army Corps. I was commanding the Baltimore battery of light artillery, six guns.

Question. State the part taken by your battery in that affair.

Answer. On the morning of June 13, asbout 9 o'clock, there were two sections of my battery went with Colonel McReynolds, commanding Third Brigade, and the third section remained for two hours in Berrivilly. I remained with them myself, and we shelled the enemy whenever we saw them coming from the south on the Millwood road. When I saw that they were getting of the right and left flank, we marched on the road to Harper's Ferry a few minutes before they came into Berryvilly. We then proceeded about 3 miles on the road to Harper's Ferry, and turned to the left on a little side road. They pursued us with cavalry, and caught us at Opequon Creek. A detachmment of the Sixth Maryland and First New Yourk Cavalry were with us as we caught up with the end of the column. We repulsed them, and marched to Winchester. We reached Winchester at 11p. m., and were placed in the fort known as the star fort, north of the main fort. Early on Sunday morning, one of the sections of the battery was ordered to the northern end of the hill on wich the star fort was built. At 12m. another was ordered to report to General El; liott. That section went on the hills toward the Front Royal road. On Sunday evening, or just after we hadd finished the houses, the enemy seemed to open on us from the western range of hills. I had just left the section, and was preparing to send another one to relieve it, when it returned to the star fort, and the other section came in shortly afterward. From about 6. 30 to 8. 30 o'clock we were actively angaged with, I think, about seventeen guns of the enemy-I counted seventeen-there may not have been seventeen; they may have shifted their guns from one position to another. They fired four guns at one time. Sometimes, from the shape of the fort, an irregular eight-sided one, I could not fire more than four guns at a time. At about 9. 30 o'clock i received notification from Colonel McReynolds that the fort would be attacked. The Sixth Maryland was placed inside the fort, and the Sixty-seventh Pennsylvania was outside in the trenches. We waited there very quietly, but the enemy did not come. At 1a. m. 15 th June, I received orders from Colonel McReynolds to spike the guns, mount the men on the horses, and move off as silently as possible. As I thought everythink had been going on well until that time, and we were all right, and not wishing to lose my battery. I asked permission oif Colonel McReynolds to see General milroy, and get an order to take it with me. Colonel McReynolds consented, and I went over to the main fort, but could not find General Milroy. I saw his adjutant-general, Major Cravens. He told me that the order I had received from Colonel McReynolds was imperative; that nothing that would make a noise could go, and that the great object of the move was perfect silence and secrecy. I then asked to be allowed to take a section. He refused, saying I might as well take a battery as a section. I then returned. Before I gave Colonel McReynolds any account of wath had taken place, he said, "I will take the responsibility; you can take a battery with you. "But when I told him what Major Cravens had told me, he said the order must be obeyed. I mounted the men on the horses, leaving those equipments that would rattle; saw the guns of my battery spiked, took off the cap-squares and linch-pins, and threw them into the water-tank. I then formed the men by twos, and marched them out of the fort. We were the last in the column of retreat, excepting the First new yourk cavalery and a number of teamsters. About 4 or 5 miles from Winchester, my attention was called to heavy firing in front. I found that a battery was in position on the right-hand side of the road leading from Martinsburg to Winchester, and an officer rode up and said that Milroy was cutting his way through. I do not know who the officer was; he was riding rapidly. The SixthMaryland and the Sixty-seventh Pennsylvasnia filed to the right. A body of teamsters rushed among my men at this time, and threw them into confusion, and then went to the right and left of the road, which I thought the best thing they couldd do under the circumstances. I would have preferred that my men should have gone off in regular order, but it was impossible with 400 or 500 teamsters mixed among them. I rode to the rear, to send any of my men who remained to the front, telling them to go to the right and make for Harper's Ferry.