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[200] a good supply of provisions and munitions at Martinsburg, did not allow himself to be detained by them; but, hurrying on, was before Harper's Ferry at 11 A. M. of the 13th. Waiting only to ascertain that McLaws, who was to cooperate on the other side of the Potomac, and Walker, who was dispatched simultaneously from Frederick, with orders to cross the Potomac at Point of Rocks and come up on the south, so as to shut in and assail our garrison from that side of the Shenandoah, were already in position, he ordered A. P. Hill, with his division, to move down the north bank of the Shenandoah into Harper's Ferry; while Lawton, with Ewell's, and J. R. Jones, with Jackson's own division, were to advance upon and threaten the beleaguered Unionists farther and farther to their right.

Harper's Ferry is little more than a deep ravine or gorge, commanded on three sides by steep mountains, and of course defensible only from one or more of these. A commander who was neither a fool nor a traitor, seeing enemies swarming against him from every side, would either have evacuated in haste, and tried to make his way out of the trap, or concentrated his force on one of the adjacent heights, and here held out, until time had been afforded for his relief. Miles did neither. He posted1 the 32d Ohio, Col. T. H. Ford, on Maryland Heights; where they were reenforced2 by the 39th and 126th New York, and next day by the 115th New York and part of a Maryland regiment. Ford's requisition for axes and spades was not filled; and the only 10 axes that could be obtained were used in constructing3 a slight breastwork of trees near the crest, with an abatis in its front; where McLaws's advance appeared and commenced skirmishing the same day.

Harper's Ferry.

An attack in force was made, early next morning,4 and was repulsed; but was followed at 9 o'clock by another and more determined, when--Col. E. She<*>ill, 126th New York, being severely wounded — his regiment broke and fled in utter rout, and the remaining regiments soon followed the example, alleging an order to retreat from Maj. Hewitt, who denied having given it. Our men were rallied after running a short distance, and reoccupied part of the ground they had so culpably abandoned, but did not regain their breastwork; and of course left the enemy in a commanding position. At 2 o'clock next morning5 Ford, without being further assailed, abandoned the Heights, so far as we still retained them, spiking his guns: 4 of which, at a later hour in the morning, were brought off by four companies, under Maj. Wood, who went over on a reconnoissance and encountered no opposition.

McLaws, with his own and Anderson's divisions, leaving Frederick on the 10th, had entered Pleasant Valley,

1 Sept. 5.

2 Sept. 12.

3 Sept. 12.

4 Sept. 13.

5 Sept. 14.

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