Question. Had you an opportunity of forming an opinion as to the cause or causes of the failure on that day?
Answer. I had not, from anything that I saw myself.
By the COURT:
Question. Were you so situated that you could see this assault?
Answer. I could not until I went to General Warren's headquarters, which was about 7 o'clock. I could not see the details.
Question. Had you made such an examination prior to the assault that would enable you to give a professional opinion as to the chances of success in attempting to take Cemetery Hill by assault, considering the explosion of the mine as the basis of the assault?
Answer. I had.
Question. I wish you would state to the Court what the chances of success were, using this mine as a means of inaugurating the assault.
Answer. I thought it entirely impracticable when the mine was made if the enemy's line should be held in full force. This opinion was formed a week or ten days prior to the assault. Afterward, with the knowledge I had of the movement of the enemy's troops from the south to the north side of the river, I thought an assault was entirely practicable.
Question. What do you suppose would have been the best plan for the assaulting troops to have followed after having reached Cemetery Hill - made a lodgment on and fortified that place, or proceeded immediately into the town of Petersburg?
Answer. I suppose the first step should have been to have made a lodgment on Cemetery Hill, and then to have pushed up troops to hold it at all hazards. The dispositions of the troops would depend upon the nature of the ground.
Question. From your knowledge of the nature of the intrenchments - our own and the enemy's - do you think that immediately after the explosion of the mine, if proper working parties had been arranged, there would have been any difficulty in removing sufficient obstructions to have enabled our troops to have moved against those intrenchments in line of battle?
Answer. I do not think there would have been any difficulty.
TESTIMONY OF GENERAL E. O. C. ORD.
Major General E. O. C. Ord, U. S. Volunteers, being duly sworn and examined by the JUDGE-ADVOCATE, says:
Question. Please state what was your command at the assault on the 30th of July.
Answer. My command was composed of two divisions to aid in the assault, one of which belonged to the Tenth Corps and was under General Turner, and the other to the Eighteenth Corps, under General Ames. The divisions numbered: General Ames' about 3,500 and General Turner's 4,000 available muskets, or probably a little less.
Question. What were your troops ordered to do?
Answer. My troops were ordered to a position in the rear of General Burnside's corps, with a view to supporting it. The positions were selected by General Burnside.
Question. Did your troop experience any interference from the Ninth Corps moving into position on that occasion?
Answer. After General Burnside's troops had made the assault and pushed forward, probably abut an hour or a little more after the explosion of the mine, he said to me, "Now you can move your troops forward," I sent orders immediately to the