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[324] to felicitate himself upon the result achieved and the unquestionable victory he had just obtained.

Franklin, in the mean while, with the left wing of his army, had also been obliged to force his way through the mountain passes, and at the same hour that the contest was raging around Turner's Gap, he had fought a similar battle at Crampton's Gap. He reached the village of Burkettsville at noon, at the foot of this defile, which he found occupied by three brigades of McLaws' division, under the orders of Howell Cobb, formerly a member of Congress, well known in the political struggles which had preceded the civil war. Here also it was through the accessible ridge of South Mountain, which could not be approached directly by the road, that a passage had to be effected. The Confederates were established on this ridge, fully determined to defend it to the last extremity. Franklin deployed the two small divisions, the only troops he had with him, Slocum on the right of the road and Smith on the left. A stone wall which extended along the base of the mountains served at first as a point d'appui to the Confederate line. Dislodged from this shelter, Cobb re-formed his troops on the ridge, where he was supported by his artillery; the latter, however, could not prevent the Federals from reaching the summit. Bartlett's brigade of Slocum's division was foremost in the attack, and suffered the heaviest losses. The Federals ended by seizing all the positions of the enemy. Masters of the Crampton's Gap pass, which Cobb had naturally abandoned, together with the heights that commanded it, they emerged into Pleasant Valley. Proceeding rapidly down this valley, their heads of column bivouacked for the night at five kilometres only from Maryland Heights—that commanding position on the left bank of the Potomac which the defenders of Harper's Ferry should have preserved at all hazards, and where Franklin fully expected to join them. This hope was to be cruelly disappointed. The brilliant combat of Crampton's Gap had cost the two small divisions of Slocum and Smith one hundred and fifteen killed, four hundred and sixteen wounded, and only two prisoners. The losses of the Confederates, who had made a gallant defence, were also considerable, and they left, besides four hundred prisoners, one field-piece and three flags in the hands of their adversaries. As

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