No. 407. Report of Brig. General William F. Smith, U. S. Army, commanding First Division, of operations June 26-July 15.
HDQRS. FIRST DIVISION, DEPT. OF SUSQUEHANNA, Greencastle, Pa., July 18, 1863.
Major: I have to report that, in obedience to orders from the general commanding, I assumed command of the troops south of the Susquehanna and in the vicinity of Harrisburg on Friday, June 26, and was busily engaged until Tuesday, 30th, in strengthening the defenses at Bridgeport, opposite the city of Harrisburg, and at Marysville, to protect the bridges of the Pennsylvania and Northern Central Railroads. On Sunday, a rebel cavalry force, with a section of artillery, came to our picket line near Oyster Point, and drove in our cavalry pickets, but did not succeed in moving the infantry pickets . On Monday, I sent the regular cavalry, under Lieutenant[Frank] Stanwood, on the Carlisle road, and he engaged and drove in the pickets of the enemy, but was obliged to retire under a fire of artillery which was opened on him . On Tuesday, learning that the rebel infantry had left Carlisle, the cavalry was ordered forward, and found the enemy at Sporting Hill. General Ewen, New York militia, in command of the Twenty-second and Thirty-seventh New York State Militia, went forward to support Lieutenant Stanwood, and a section of Landis' battery, under the direction of Lieutenant Muhlenberg, was immediately ordered up. The enemy was found in position, and attacked about 4 p. m. The artillery arrived on the ground about 5 p. m., and soon silenced the fire on the enemy . General Ewen's command was ordered forward to occupy Carlisle, but did not march until the next morning . Captain Boyd, First New York Cavalry, with 120 men, was also ordered by the Trindle Spring Road, via Churchtown, to Carlisle . He stopped at Chuchstown, and entered Carlisle on the morning of July 1. Colonel Brisbane, commanding the Pennsylvania Brigade, was ordered to move on Carlisle by the mud road at daylight, n=but owing to a want of transportation, did not to move until about 9 a. m. I visited the headquarters to receive instructions and make arrangements for supplies and transportation, and, recrossing the river, the remainder of the command, under Brigadier-general Knipe, U. S. Volunteers, was directed to march as far as practicable and encamp, and to move at an early hour in the morning . The Eleventh New York Artillery, under Colonel Forbes, refused to march under certain pleas, and the, matter was referred to General Couch . This delayed my starting till 3. 30 p. m., and finally, leaving orders with General Knipe to carry out the instructions with reference to the refractory regiment, I left to join the advance. Hearing rumors on the road of a large cavalry force in the vicinity, I sent out scouts on the cross-road, and ousted on, entering Carlisle at sunset. General Ewen had passed through the town on the Baltimore turnpike about 1 and 1/2 miles, and, while going on to examine his position, word came from my scouts that a large cavalry force of the enemy was in the immediate vicinity, on the York road, and, turning back, before I