12, and from some reason unknown to me the cavalry trains did not follow promptly. We marched until about 11 p. m. without feeding or watering men or animals, when we arrived at a small creek about one mile this side of Berryville. At that point Captain McGonnigle, acting chief quartermaster Middle Military Division, was present and ordered the trains to be parked long enough to water the animals and make coffee for the men-the Sixth Corps train parked on the right side of the road; the Nineteenth on the left; the Army of West Virginia, eighth Army Corps, on the right of the Sixth Corps, I think; the Cavalry Corps to the rear of the place where the Sixth Corps had parked, and partially on the same ground. The train required about two and a half hours to pass a given point. the Sixth Corps train moved out between 12 and 1 a. m., leaving, consequently, before the cavalry train arrived. They were followed by the Nineteenth Corps in regular order, and this followed by the train of the Army of West Virginia. When the train commenced moving General Kenly gave me the following orders, in presence of Captain McGonnigle, chief quartermaster:"I consider this the most dangerous point in the route. I desire you to remain here, therefore, until every wagon has passed." When the wagons of the Army of West Virginia were moving out my chief wagon-master reported to met hat the cavalry trains were unhooked and feeding their stock. I immediately went to those trains, roused the officers in charge, ordering them to hook up their teams and start immediately, telling them we were in danger of an attack. Upon passing among the trains I discovered one train that was not being hooked up, and I endeavored to find some officer in charge, but without effect. I then passed through the train again to find a wagon-master, but was unable to do so. It was now nearly daylight and I dismounted and woke up the drivers myself, one by one, ordering them to immediately hook up their teams. I am under the impression that the animals of this train were unharnessed, but I am not positive. The drivers were so long in getting this train ready that the sun had fairly risen when the enemy opened fire upon us, throwing three shells. Upon the explosion of the second shell I reported to the lieutenant-colonel commanding the rear guard for instructions. At this time the train was not entirely hooked up, the lead and swing mules being harnessed to their wagons, and the wheel mules in the act of being hooked. Upon the explosion of the first shell many of the drivers mounted their saddle mule, which was ready saddled, and fled. When I reported to the lieutenant-colonel he was rallying his men and forming them in line. I should think there were about seventy-five of them. I reported to the lieutenant-colonel that it was impossible to move the train to corral it, and asked for instructions. He replied he had none to give. I told him the rebel guns held the road, and if he had no instructions for me I would go around the hill and hurry the balance of the train away. He said, "Very well." By this time the enemy's cavalry, clothed mostly in blue, led by a man in civilian dress, wheeled into line from sets of fours and commenced firing whit carbines and advancing toward the train. At this point I left the train, passed around the hill, and rejoined the balance of the train beyond Berryville. About three miles beyond Berryville I met two squadrons of cavalry going toward Berryville upon a trot. I gave them what information was in my power and hurried on whit the balance of the train, which I reported to General Kenly near Winchester.
I am unable to give an accurate statement of the losses, as I had no report from the officer in command of the train lost, and did not again visit the place of disaster.
By the BOARD:
Question. In your opinion, did the rear guard do all that they could do to defend and save the train?
Answer. At the time I left I considered them doing their full duty. The lieutenant-colonel had drawn his men up in line and was perfectly cool and collected, although the force of the enemy in view outnumbered the rear guard.
Question. Did that portion of the cavalry train captured park and unharness their teams without orders, and who was the officer in charge?
Answer. They unhooked and fed without orders, or even reporting to me. I was unable to find any officer in charge of said train, either commissioned officer or wagon-master.
(The train here referred o, the one destroyed, was the third Brigade Cavalry Reserve train.)
Question. What officer was placed in charge of that train?
Answer. the officer reported to met was Lieutenant William Dean, acting assistant quartermaster of the Cavalry Reserve Brigade.