each way, in convoys of five trains each, at intervals of eight hours. Trains cannot pass at any point on this road, from want of sidings, and there is no telegraph line; still, if cars are promptly loaded and unloaded, and no accident occurs, I hope to pass one hundred and fifty cars per day each way, capable of carrying from 2, 000 to 4, 000 wounded. In return cars, the rapidity of loading and unloading will measure the capacity of the road.
My men have passed over the Northern Central Railroad to Hanover Junction, and over the Hanover and Gettysburg branches to Oxford, 7 miles from Gettysburg. A branch is marked on the map from Hanover to Littlestown, but my information is that road is actually laid only a few hundred yards from Hanover. I have informed General Ingalls by courier of all these facts, and it rests with him to designate the route. I have no very recent information from Gettysburg, but at last account the position of the enemy would not permit the reconstruction and operation of the Gettysburg branch at that time. I can soon open the branch road to Gettysburg after we have full and undisturbed possession.
HANOVER JUNCTION, July 4, 1863. (Received, War Department, 12. 35 p. m.)
All the supplies offered for transportation on Westminster branch have been sent forward, and sidings at Relay are clear. Our arrangements work well. Transportation of the wounded should be sent via Westminster, to fill return cars. I have so requested. Our men rebuilt entirely the bridge at this Junction, three spans of about 40 feet, this morning. They expect to reach York to-morrow night. The reconstruction of the Northern Central entire at this time may not be an imperative military necessity, but, as my corps would not be otherwise employed, it is best to do it. I will endeavor to secure for you, when I reach Hanover, more rapid communication be telegraph with Gettysburg.
HANOVER, PA., July 4, 1863. (Received 4. 20 p. m.)
I am now at Hanover Station. A bridge is broken between this place and Littlestown. I will proceed at once to repair it, and commence to send off wounded; then return and take the Gettysburg Railroad, and commence repairing it. It will be well to make a good hospital in York, with which place I expect in two days to be in communication by rail. Until then, temporary arrangements can be made for the wounded. I learn that the wire in intact for 9 miles toward Gettysburg. I will have it repaired, and communicate any information of importance that I can obtain.