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Doc. 69.-the battle at falling Waters. July 2, 1861.

The telegraphic account of the battle near Hainesville was exceedingly meagre and unsatisfactory. This fact may be accounted for by mentioning that the Government operator at Hagerstown became so excited when the account of the fight reached him, that he shouldered his musket within a quarter of an hour, to rejoin his comrades in Virginia.

The gentleman who indited the original story, of which the operator used a part, is now in this city. He has extended to us the particulars of his observations, which we shall briefly communicate.

Gen. Patterson's command had been waiting to cross the Potomac for some time. While encamped at Williamsport, Md., and upon the river bank below that town, Capt. McMullin's scouts, and the secret spies of Government, were making daily pilgrimages to Virginia to ascertain the character of the enemy, and his defences, and to carefully study the topography of the land.

It was fully intended, a few nights before, to send the army over the river in two divisions; the first under Gen. Patterson to cross at Williamsport; the second, under Gen. Cadwalader, to cross at Sheperdstown, some miles below, and thus flank the enemy, and drive him from his position or capture him.

Circumstances necessitated a counter order. The men were nightly aroused, and as often disappointed, until, on Tuesday morning, at 3 o'clock, positive orders came, and the army got under way.

The ford at this place is narrow, and the river is but little deeper than a creek, being so shallow that a man may wade it without being wet above the middle. The road on the other [243] side lies parallel with the river until immediately opposite Williamsport, when it turns directly from the stream, and goes at a gentle acclivity, up the slope and over the fields.

At a few yards from the stream stands the toll-house at which Captain Doubleday threw shot, and just beyond is a wood upon the hilltop, to which the rebel scouts used to ride, and hitching their steeds in the undergrowth come out to the toll-house to reconnoitre.

From this place they had a clear view of our encampments, and could study the position, numbers, and movements of our regiments. At this place, too, Col. Bowman was taken prisoner and hustled off to Martinsburg, while his men looked out upon his capture.

However, the river was crossed at an early hour on Tuesday morning. McMullin's Rangers dashed in first, the City Troop and Gen. Patterson and staff followed, and after them came the two regiments of Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

The remaining regiments took the matter less impetuously, and so lost their share in the honors of the battle. They marched leisurely into a field on the margin of the river, removed their boots, stockings, drawers, and breeches, wound these articles around their necks, and thus, with the whole lower portion of their bodies nude, and their white muslin shirts flying in the wind, preceded by a full band in similar undress, they plunged into the stream and reached the opposite shore.

Here they readjusted their dress, and avoided the wet garments and soaking shoes of their predecessors.

One informant states that the appearance of the regiments thus proceeding was ludicrous in the extreme.

Arrived on the other side, they began the march leisurely up the hill. At the old tollhouse they encountered the ancient female who exacts the fare. This old lady had been driven away by the rebel scouts, who had made sad havoc with her dwelling-lying down in muddy boots upon her counterpanes, and smashing and abstracting crockery, with a total disregard of the rights of meum and tuum. Added to these disadvantages, Captain Doubleday's cannon balls had split the front porch in half and demolished the chimney.

The old lady was glad to see the Union troops, and looked at them through her spectacles. She stated that she was very poor, the rebels having plundered and destroyed her little property; she said sadly that now she must go to taking toll again, although very few would travel.

It was full daylight when these latter regiments proceeded up the turnpike. Beyond the toll-gate, the road, hard and narrow, dotted with farms and groves, went meandering up and down the hills. The troops did not march shoulder to shoulder, but scattered along the way to eat blackberries and question the Virginians. All the occupants of the farm-houses came out to see them, and the girls waved their handkerchiefs.

Most of the people professed to be Unionists, and were, in semblance at least, glad to see their deliverers. Their own troops had spoiled them shamefully, turning their horses to graze in the unripe wheatfields, and exacting corn and meal without money and without price. A curious feature of the march was the appearance of many Union refugees who hung to the skirts of the advance guard of our army. These people had been driven away just as harvest was shining upon the grain fields. They came back with songs and full hearts, often bursting into tears when their homes appeared to them again after absence and banishment.

Noticeable features of the “pike,” too, were the gaps in the fences, where frequently dozens of panels were levelled, with the object of unembarrassed pursuit in case our volunteers should retreat.

Over the road, thus solid and pleasant to walk upon, the Federal regiments walked into the pleasant farmlands of Virginia, bearing above them the flag that its people loved, whilom. They picked up in places knapsacks and canteens, dropped by the flying foe, all of which were marked with the inscription, “Virginia Volunteers.”

From some jackets and caps, &c., thus relinquished, our informant is enabled to say that no Pennsylvania troops are so miserably clothed. Their uniforms — gray, trimmed with black — were of the commonest kind of coarse “shoddy.”

While thus marching along in the dawn, the hinder regiments, among which was the Scott Legion, heard the first peals of the cannon, far ahead. Instantly every man fell into a run, and with wild shouts they broke away, anxious to be “up the road and at 'em.” At each new peal their step became quicker, but laggard haste would not atone; the fight was over before they reached the ground!

With the latter regiments, our informant — a civilian — was travelling. He instantly touched up his pony at the sound of the cannon, and dashed away in the direction of the firing. Coming to a frame farm-house beside the road, temporarily converted into a hospital, he dismounted, and found inside the body of Geo. Drake, of Company A, First Wisconsin Regiment. The deceased had been shot through the breast, and fell dead at once, exclaiming at the moment, “Oh, my mother!” He looked as placid and fair, lying thus to wake no more, as if reposing in a gentle sleep.

Around him, grouped upon the floor, lay a number of wounded men, among them a Secession soldier, who had been shot in the eye by a musket ball, which carried away the bridge of his nose, and a part of his eyebrow.

The Secessionist stated that he had been a Union man, but impressed into the Virginia ranks under promised death in case of refusal. [244] Our informant turned the coverlet down from his face, and the fellow looked up at him silently through his gashed and dripping eye.

The women in this house had rushed to the woods in the beginning of the action, but returned after the battle, and cheerfully assisted the wounded, making mattresses and bandages for them.

Further on, (five miles from the Potomac,) they reached Porterfield's farm, the battleground proper. It seems that Gen. Patterson and staff, Majors Craig Biddle and R. B. Price, Col. Wm. C. Patterson, and Capt. Newton, with the First Wisconsin Regiment and the Eleventh Pennsylvania Regiment, (Col. Jarrett,) preceded by the City Troop and Doubleday's battery, the whole led by Capt. McMullin and the Philadelphia Independent Rangers, reached this farm at 7 o'clock in the morning. The enemy were drawn up behind the house, in line-of-battle order, with their park of four guns directly upon the turnpike, bearing upon the Union ranks. McMullin's men were some rods in advance, and they first opened fire. The first cannon-shot of the rebels passed over the heads of the Federal troops, a single ball striking the gable of Porterfield's dwelling, and passing out at the peak of the roof. The rebels fired badly, not a single cannon ball, during the whole action of a half-hour's duration, inflicting a mortal wound. One ball passed between a soldier's musket and his cheek, and, almost simultaneously, a second shot struck his gun, bending the tube double, and sending the splinters into his face and breast. The man will probably lose an eye. Their first discharges of musketry were aimed too high, but subsequently they aimed low, and most of the wounded upon our side were struck below the knees. Our men advanced continually, loading and firing, until the Wisconsin Regiment had approached to within 300 yards, and McMullin's men were less than 100 yards from the rebels' advance lines. The rebels have lost, from all statements, at least 100 in killed and wounded. After firing for an hour or less, they retired at a rapid trot, and in great disorder, seeming to labor to outstrip each other in their flighty purpose.

Porterfield's house is a two-story frame dwelling, with frame kitchen attached. Porterfield is a Union man, who had been run off. He had taken his family to the woods for security, but returned at once and gave the wounded every assistance. His family soon followed him, and the dwelling became a hospital, where the wounded lay, most of them seeming to suffer no great anxiety beyond the event of the fight and their own hard fate at not being engaged. Of all the wounded upon the Federal side, not one will die.

At Hainesville, three miles beyond, they made a second futile and shorter stand, but were driven back with renewed loss. This latter place had been the site of their encampment. Our informant reached it before noon, and found the town and suburbs occupied by our regiments, with the rear regiments fast hurrying in. Gen. Patterson took quarters in the house of William Mitchell. He was greatly delighted with his success, but gave the rebels some credit for courage. He was delighted with the Eleventh Pennsylvania and the Wisconsin regiment. There he took dinner with his aids, having first made all precautionary arrangements.

Our own troops had no sooner reached the village than they scattered on a pleasure excursion. One of the first places to which they paid their respects was the store and post-office of one Turner, the Secession postmaster of the village. This man had particularly signalized himself for partisan meanness. He had been an applicant for the postmastership, but Mr. Myers, an opponent, was appointed; where-upon Turner received the appointment through Mr. Jefferson Davis's government. The latter procured the arrest of Myers upon the charge of treason to Virginia. He was thown into prison, and condemned to die, but was released a few days before the battle.

Being thus particularly inimical to the soldiers and the Government, Turner's house was at once visited by the troops. They smashed his furniture and ripped open his beds, finishing the work by splintering the old family clock. Turner himself was arrested in the woods, and brought into town, followed by his daughters. He looked very sheepish, and was at once put under guard. A Secession flag was found in his place, and great numbers of envelopes marked “Confederate States of America.” His daughters — waspish young ladies — seemed solicitous only for their dresses. One of them, standing amid the wreck of her household goods, made piteous inquiries for a certain new bonnet that she had left in a band-box in the second story. It being found that a soldier had put his foot through both band-box and bonnet, she burst into a flood of piteous grief, and said: “They might have left that; none on 'em could wear it.” With the exception of these young ladies, no females were seen in the town, all of the softer sex having fled to Martinsburg and Winchester.

Mr. Myers, the legal postmaster of the place, returned in time to save his furniture, which the troops had mistaken for that of a “Secesher.”

In every direction men were seen bearing ducks and chickens. Our informant encountered one with a bed blanket wrapped around him. “You took that from the house of a citizen,” said he. “I didn't,” said the soldier, with a grin. “I got it a month ago! But if you give me a dollar I'll take it back!”

Before leaving Williamsport, a picket saw a man standing upon a housetop, waving a lantern, Said action was probably a signal to the enemy of the march of the Federal troops. The man has been arrested, and the affair will be investigated. Two regiments of Pennsylvania troops now guard the town. [245]

The success of this movement is dependent, to a great extent, upon Jerome Claunsen, Gen. Patterson's guide. Mr. Claunsen has travelled among the enemy, and studied the position of all the by-roads.

Mr. Farrell, of Downington, Pa., is likewise marked as rendering important services. He assisted Capt. Doubleday in laying out these admirable intrenchments near Williamsport, which still remain to be occupied in an emergency.

The Secessionists appear to have been well armed in this fight. Those taken carried Minie muskets, of Harper's Ferry pattern.

Altogether considered, this fight was marked by great cowardice on the part of the Rebels, and an easy victory upon the Federals'.

They will now proceed to Winchester, by the fields over which old John Brown looked admiringly on his way to the gallows, and said: “How beautiful are the grain fields!” --Philadelphia Press, July 5.

Another Union account.

it is now four o'clock P. M., and the battle of Falling Waters is over.

Three men have been killed on our side. Geo. Drake of Company A, Wisconsin 1st Regiment, was shot through the head and expired instantly. One man was killed in the 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, and one in Colonel Thomas's 2d Cavalry. Corporal McGinley, of McMullin's Rangers, was shot through the foot. Wm. H. Kuhns of the 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, slightly touched from a cannon ball alongside the face. Attending to duty. H. S. Young, Company G, Wisconsin Regiment, musket ball in the head. W. A. Matthews, Company G, Wisconsin Regiment, musket ball through the leg.

Bromis Napp, a Secessionist belonging to Capt. Avis's company of the 5th Virginia Regiment, Col. Harper commanding, was shot through the breast and still living, and lies in the house used for a hospital for our men. Frederick Palmer, of Company G, Wisconsin Regiment, shot in the right leg.

----Reed, of Company K, 11th Pennsylvania, musket ball in the breast. Just before Mr. Reed was shot down, a cannon ball struck his musket, and bent it into the shape of an S, and cut away part of the barrel, besides driving the splinters into his breast.

Warren Graham, Fourth Sergeant of Company B, Wisconsin Regiment, wounded in the left breast, right arm, and left leg.

M. F. Hamacker, Company B, 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, shot in left shoulder.

James Morgan, Company E, 11th Pennsylvania Regiment, and D. R. Stiles of the same company, were standing together and were both wounded with one grape shot.

The Color Sergeant of the Wisconsin Regiment was the first man wounded, but he bravely kept the flag up until some one came to relieve him.

Lieut.-Col. Wilson of the Secession force, is said to be lying in a house, a short distance from the camp, mortally wounded.

The loss of the rebels in killed and wounded must be considerable. One man who witnessed their retreat, certifies that he saw them carry 27 dead bodies past his home, and that they had got their wounded into wagons and were taking them off as fast as possible. He says there could not have been less than 50 wounded.

Our men found three of their dead upon the field, and buried them with care after the battle.

The battle commenced a mile beyond Falling Waters, at 9 o'clock this morning.

The commencement was sudden and without any previous knowledge that it was at hand.

Col. Perkins had rode out some distance in front of his battery, and upon turning a bend of the road, suddenly found himself face to face with two strange officers, mounted. They made the military salute, and shook hands cordially with the Colonel, asking him what company he belonged to. He answered Company C. Just then one of the officers espied the battery coming around the bend, and exclaiming, “Artillery, by G — d!” both put spurs to their horses and left. Col. Perkins shouted, “Now, boys, we've got 'em!” and in less than a minute the battery opened hot and heavy, right and left of the road. The Wisconsin Regiment was supporting the battery on the left of the road, and the Pennsylvania Eleventh on the right. These immediately came up into position, and poured in one volley before the enemy had time to form; and, in fact, they never got formed, but fought guerilla during the whole action.

This was probably done to cover the retreat of the main body of their forces. Just in the middle of the fight, the Twenty-third Regiment came up as cool as so many cucumbers, and pitched into the chase, flanking out a considerable distance to the left, and routing the rebels from all their places of concealment. McMullin's men lay along the road near the battery, and in the woods, fighting Indian fashion, Every man was cool and deliberate, and their shots told with fearful effect.

The cavalry of the rebels attempted to make two charges upon the Eleventh; but were broken and fled each time. The pursuit was continued over three miles, and only ceased when the men became tired out trotting double-quick and loading and firing in the hot sun. The heaviest part of the action took place on the farm of a gentleman named Porterfield, about two miles beyond Falling Waters, and within one and a half miles of Hainesville, where the army now lays.

It is four and a half miles from here to Martinsburg, and it is expected that the first thing done to-morrow morning will be to march forward and occupy that place. The behavior of [246] the Wisconsin men, the 23d, the 11th, and McMullin's men, under fire, is spoken of in the highest terms; while the City Troop and 2d Cavalry behaved with most admirable coolness.

Colonel C. P. Dare found in one of the camps the rebels had just left, the following note unfinished:

camp Stephens, July 2, 1861.
dear sue: I have written two or three letters to you and Ellen, but not being able to get them to the Post-Office, had to tear them up. Our nearest Post-Office is at Martinsburg, about four miles from camp. We have been at this camp nearly two weeks. There are about 3,500 troops here, all Virginia troops, under Colonel Jackson. The troops from other States are at Winchester.

It is fair to presume that about the time the gentleman had proceeded thus far with his epistle, something turned up in the shape of “our fellows” which compelled him to postpone the latter part of it indefinitely.

--N. Y. Tribune, July 8.

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