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[537] twenty-two miles from Winchester. This was after I had given my orders for the other movement.

Question by the Chairman: [Senator Wade] And that left Johnston free?

Answer: Yes, sir; left him free to make his escape, which he did. * * *

Question: In what direction would Johnston have had to move to get by you?

Answer: Right out to the Shenandoah river, which he forded. He found out from his cavalry, who were watching us, that we were actually leaving, and he started at 1 o'clock that same day, with 8,000 men, forded the Shenandoah where it was so deep that he ordered his men to put their cart-ridge-boxes on their bayonets, got out on the Leesburg road, and went down to Manassas. * * *

Question by the Chairman: Did Patterson assign any reason for that movement?

Answer: I was, of course, very indignant about it, and so were all my officers and men; so much so that when, subsequently, at Harper's Ferry, Patterson came by my camp, there was a universal groan — against all discipline, of course, and we suppressed it as soon as possible. The excuse given by Gen. Patterson was this: that he had received intelligence that he could rely upon that Gen. Johnston had been reinforced by 20,000 men from Manassas, and was going to make an attack upon him; and, in the order which I received that night — a long order of three pages — I was ordered to occupy all the communicating roads, turning off a regiment here, and two or three regiments there, and a battery at another place, to occupy all the roads from Winchester to the neighborhood of Charlestown, and all the cross-roads, and hold them all that day, until Gen. Patterson's whole army went by me to Charlestown; and I sat seven hours in the saddle near a place called Smithfield, while Patterson, with his whole army, went by me on their way to Charlestown, he being apprehensive, as he said, of an attack from Johnston's forces.

Question by Mr. Odell: You covered this movement?

Answer: Yes, sir. Now the statement that he made, which came to me through Col. Abercrombie, who was Patterson's brother-in-law, and commanded one division in that army, was that Johnston had been reinforced; and Gen. Fitz-John Porter reported the sane thing to my officers. Gen. Porter was then the chief of Patterson's staff, and was a very excellent officer, and an accomplished soldier. They all had got this story, which was without the slightest shadow of foundation; for there had not a single man arrived at the camp since we had got full information that their force consisted of 20,000 men, of whom 1,800 were sick with the measles. The story was, however, that they had ascertained, by reliable information, of this reinforcement. Where they got their information, I do not know. None such reached me; and I picked up deserters and other persons to get all the information I could; and we since have learned, as a matter of certainty, that Johnston's force never did exceed 20,000 men there. But the excuse Patterson gave was, that Johnston had been reinforced by 20,000 men from Manassas, and was going to attack him. That was the reason he gave then for this movement. But, in this paper he has lately published, he hints at another reason — another excuse — which was that it was by order of Gen. Scott. Now, I know that the peremptory order of Gen. Scott to Gen. Patterson, repeated over and over again, was this — I was present on several occasions when telegraphic communications went from Gen. Scott to Gen. Patterson: Gen. Scott's orders to Gen. Patterson were that, if he were strong enough, he was to attack and beat Johnston. But, if not, then he was to place himself in such a position as to keep Johnston employed, and prevent him from making a junction with Beauregard at Manassas. That was the repeated direction of Gen. Scott to Gen. Patterson; and it was because of Patterson's hesitancy, and his hanging back, and keeping so far beyond the reach of Johnston's camp, that I was ordered to go up there and reinforce him, and assist him in any operations necessary to effect that object. The excuse of Gen. Patterson now is, that he had orders from Gen. Scott to move to Charlestown. Now, that is not so. But this state of things existed: Before the movement was made from Martinsburg, Gen. Patterson suggested to Gen. Scott that Charlestown would be a better base of operations than Martinsburg, and suggested that he had better move on Charlestown, and thence make his approaches to Winchester; that it would be better to do that than to move directly to Winchester from Martinsburg; and Gen. Scott wrote back to say that, if he found that movement a better one, he was at liberty to make it. But Gen. Patterson had already commenced his movement on Winchester direct from Martinsburg, and had got as far as Bunker Hill; so that the movement which he had formerly suggested, to Charlestown, was suppressed by his own act. But that is the pretense now given in his published speech for making the movement from Bunker Hill to Charlestown, which was a retreat, instead of the advance which the movement to Charlestown he first proposed to Gen. Scott was intended to be. * *

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