War of the Rebellion: Serial 126 Page 0077 UNION AUTHORITIES.

Search Civil War Official Records

rolling-stock was ordered to Norfolk, with the intention of landing it at that point, the object being to open communication with Weldon and use this stock on the road. The order was afterward countermanded by you on account of the cessation of hostilities, and all the rolling-stock ordered to Manchester (opposite Richmond), there to be stored until sold. We abandoned this road June 30 and turned it over to the company, leaving a small force to take charge of Government property until sold or removed to Alexandria.

WINCHESTER AND POTOMAC RAILROAD.

In obedience to an order received from you August 12 to repair and put in working order this road from Harper's Ferry to Halltown (a distance of six miles), a construction force with material was sent to Harper's Ferry. Repairs were commenced August 14, and regular trains commenced running through to Halltown August 19. From that date the road was not used to any great extent, and only a limited amount of freight was transported until October 29, at which date your ordered the extension of the road to Winchester. November 2 a detachment of our Construction Corps commenced rebuilding the road from Halltown. Track was completed to Charlestown (ten miles from Harper's Ferry) on the 5th; Summit Point (eighteen miles from Harper's Ferry) on the 14th, and Stephenson's (twenty-eight miles form Harper's Ferry) on the 24th. I received orders from General Sheridan to make this the terminus of the road, establish depot grounds, lay the necessary sidings, and prepare for a heavy business. Our rolling-stock consisted of thirteen engines and about seventy-five cars, all in good condition. Our railroad employes numbered about 600 men. December 12 Mr. O. H. Dorrance was appointed superintendent of this line, relieving Mr. Beggs, who was ordered to report to Alexandria. The old strap rail was removed from line of road and sent to Alexandria, engine-house and machine-shops built at Harper's Ferry,and a number of extensive platforms built at Harper's Ferry and Stephenson's for the shipping of quartermaster's and commissary stores. I also frequently employed a portion of our construction force unloading cars at Stephenson's. This was done on account of the large amount of freight kept in the cars by quartermasters, they not having sufficient force to unload it. During the months of January, February, March, and April business continued to be done promptly and without any serious accident. April 29 I ordered Mr. Dorrance, superintendent, to City Point, for the purpose of taking charge of the Richmond and Danville Railroad, leaving Mr. D. T. Shaw, dispatcher, in charge of Winchester and Potomac line.

In May business began to slac off. On the 21st the Opequon bridge, one of the largest on the road, was swept off by a freshest, interfering with operations for a few days. During the month of June I reduced the rolling-stock to five engines and about sixty cars, and the force employed on the road to about 175 men, thus carrying out your previous order. A total of 3,294 feet of trestle-work, an average of 12 1/2 feet high, was built on main track and sidings on this road. This ends the report of operations up to this date. I might add, however, that all railroad material used in construction of this road had to be sent from Alexandria to Harper's Ferry over the Baltimore and Ohio road. Most of the railroad iron was shipped direct from the Manassas Gap Railroad, where a large force was engaged in