War of the Rebellion: Serial 044 Page 0128 Chapter XXXIX. N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC.

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gave rise to these telegrams,, and, in General Schenck's estimation, and in my own, their was nothing in the last telegram that indicated and order for an immediate evacuation more than the other.

Question. What, in your judgement, was the effect of the defense made at Winchester in checking and delaying the enemy, and making known his strength before his advance into Maryland and Pennsylvania?

Answer. The court is a better judge of that than I am. if the War Department and the General-in-Chief. had no other information of the movements of Lee than is indicated in the two telegrams received in Baltimore, the check that the rebels received at Winchester must have been of importance to us.

Question. How long did it take you to send a dispatch from Baltimore to General Milroy and to get his answer?

Answer. Winchester was connected with our office be telegraph through Harper's Ferry and Martinsburg. When the lines were in working order, our communications were, as is usual, with the telegraph. We had excellent operators always at their posts. I do not recollect an instance where there was any delay in getting an order through.

Question. Did or did not General Schenck's order to General Milroy (to remain at Winchester until further order), deprive him entirely of all discretionary authority to retire, without reference to the force that might attack him?

Answer. it certainly did. He had no discretion, but to remain there until further orders.

Question. Do you know whether Major-General Schenck communicated to Major-General Milroy the numerous orders he had received from the General-in-Chief. in relation to the absolute necessity of abandoning Winchester and falling back on Harper's Ferry?

Answer. He certainly did transmit them, but not in the shape of orders. He sent them altogether by telegraph, I think. I can answer more fully tomorrow, after reference to the records at our headquarters in Baltimore.

Question. What is the date of General Milroy's last telegram to General Schenck form Winchester?

Answer. I believe the following is the last, viz:

"HARPER'S FERRY, June 13, 1863-11 a. m.

"Major-General SCHENCK:

"Have received the following dispatch from General Milroy. Am very sorry you interfered with me.

"DONN PIATT,

"Chief of Staff. "

"Colonel PIATT,

"Chief of Staff:

"A small detachment of First New York encountered a body of rebel cavalry at White Post, supposed to be the advance of force met by Twelfth Pennsylvania on Front Royal road. Two of First New York wounded and 1 missing. One rebel killed and some wounded. A large rebel wagon train, with strong cavalry force, was discovered on Cedar Creek or Back road this morning. Have sent out heavy scouting parties on Cedar Creek, Front Royal, and Strasburg roads, well supported. Have not yet heard from Berryville. Am perfectly certain of my ability to hold this place.

"R. H. MILROY,

"Major-Genera. "

"Colonel PIATT,

"Chief of Staff:

"Enemy have appeared in considerable force on Cedar Creek, Strasburg, and Front Royal roads, and skirmishing going on. Nothing but cavalry appears yet. Let them come.

"R. H. MILROY,

"Major-General. "