the destruction of the batteries was worth the danger involved.
The positive order of the President, probably issued under the pressure of the Secretary of War, forced me to undertake the opening of the railway.
For this purpose I went to Harper's Ferry in February, intending to throw over a force sufficient to occupy Winchester.
To do this it was necessary to have a reliable bridge across the Potomac — to insure supplies and prompt reenforcements.
The pontoon-bridge, thrown as a preliminaying Charlestown until its completion, postponing to the same time the advance to Winchester.
I had fully explained my intentions to the President and Secretary before leaving Washington, providing for precisely such a contingency.
While at Harper's Ferry I learned that the President was dissatisfied with my action, and on reaching Washington I laid a full explanation before the Secretary, with which he expressed himself entirely satisfied, and told me that the President was already so, and th