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[538] I moved through Quincy and Altodale to Greenwood on the macadamised road from Chambersburg to Gettysburg.1 At this point my division remained in camp on the 25th, and I visited General Ewell at Chambersburg, and received from him instructions to cross the South Mountain to Gettysburg, and then proceed to York, cut the Northern Central railroad running from Baltimore to Harrisburg, destroy the bridge across the Susquehanna at Wrightsville and Columbia, on the branch railroad from York towards Philadelphia, if I could, and rejoin him at Carlisle by the way of Dillstown.2 Colonel Elijah White's battalion of cavalry was ordered to report to me for this expedition, and on the morning of the 26th, having sent all my wagon trains to Chambersburg except the ambulances, one medical wagon for each brigade, the regimental ordnance wagons, one wagon with cooking utensils for each regiment (including the officers), and fifteen empty wagons to use in gathering supplies, and carrying no other baggage, I moved towards Gettysburg.3 On reaching the forks of the road, on the east slope of

1 Rodes's and Johnson's divisions had preceded me across the Potomac, the former at Williamsport and the latter at Shepherdstown, taking the route through Hagerstown and Greencastle to Chambersburg. My route was along the western base of South Mountain, and the very excellent public maps of the counties in Maryland and Pennsylvania which we obtained from citizens, enabled me to move along this part of the route as well as afterwards without the assistance of a guide.

2 It will be seen that General Lee says in his report, published in the August number of the Southern Magazine, that orders were given to me to seize and hold the bridge from Wrightsville to Columbia. The orders received by me were as stated in my report, which was written very shortly after the close of the campaign. This discrepancy may have arisen from a misapprehension by General Ewell; but my recollection is very distinct, and I have now a memorandum in pencil, made at the time in General Ewell's presence, showing what was to be my march on each day, and the time of my probable junction with him, and also a note from him from Carlisle, all of which rebuts the idea that I was to hold the bridge. However, afterwards I determined to depart from my instructions and to secure the bridge, cross the river, and move up in rear of Harrisburg, as I found the condition of the country different from what was contemplated at the time the instructions were given. This discrepancy is a matter of very little moment really, as the destruction of the bridge by the enemy settled the question without any agency of ours; and I have made this explanation simply from the fact that the statement as contained in my original report is variant from that in General Lee's report. I can well see how General Ewell may have misapprehended General Lee's directions, or how the latter, writing more than eighteen months after the events had happened, may have fallen into the mistake from the fact that I really attempted to secure the bridge and the enemy burned it to thwart my purpose.

3 Before leaving Greenwood I had the iron-works of Mr. Thaddeus Stevens, near that place, burned and destroyed, as the enemy had made it an invariable rule to burn all such establishments wherever he had gone in the Confederacy.

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