War of the Rebellion: Serial 107 Page 0007 Chapter LXIII. SKIRMISH AT HARPER'S FERRY, VA.

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force opened fire on the enemy apparently retreating to their boats, but in reality returning to the steamers to carry a howitzer battery on shore, and drove them in confusion into their boats and the river. A brief skirmish ensued, in which several of the enemy fell, and were supposed to have been killed and wounded. During the conflict the fire of our men was turned upon the steamer Freeborn as well as upon the boats, which were pushed off with precipitation and alarm. The attack was made by Major R. M. Mayo with Gouldin's company of Sarta Greys, under First Lieutenant Saunders, and Lee's legion of cavalry, under First Lieutenant Beale, belonging to his battalion, and terminated before the troops concentrating became generally engaged. There was every indication that the enemy suffered a severe loss, while on our part we met with none. We captured 4 shovels and 8 axes, and some 250 sandbags, and a large coil of rope, and some arms and equipments. The enemy had actually commence raising intrenchments with sand- bags, and by felling timber indicated an intention to occupy the position. I have great pleasure in expressing my satisfaction with the excellent conduct of the troops I have the honor to command. Major R. M. Mayo, First Lieutenant W. M. Saunders, First Lieutenant R. L. T. Beale, and Second Lieutenant A. G. Dade are entitled to separate notice.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel, Provisional Army, Commanding Forces.

First Lieutenant H. H. WALKER,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, C. S . Army.


JULY 4, 1861.- Skirmish at Harper's Ferry, Va.

Report of Colonel John W. Stiles, Eighty- third New York Infantry (Ninth State Militia).


Sandy Hook, near Harper's Ferry, July 4, 1861

SIR: In compliance with your order of to- day, I arrived here about 4.30 p. m. and found Major Atterbury with two companies retiring toward the village, having been engaged across the Potomac near the brigade with the rebels' pickets, and at a great disadvantage, the rebels being under cover of bridge piers, trestle- work, and firing from the widows with rifles, while the arms in the hands of our men were the ordinary percussion muskets, which could not carry across the river with any precision. I have the honor of inclosing a copy of Major Atterbury's report of the combat,* the result of which shows the necessity of changing the arms we have now in use for some longreach arm.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Colonel Ninth New York State Militia.

Colonel STONE,

Commanding Rockville Expedition.


[2.] *See next, post.