Correspondence from the 8th New York Artillery
Batavia, Genesee County, New York:
Written From Harper's Ferry ~
March To Maryland Heights;
Appointments Of Col. Porter, Surgeon Leet, Lt. JR Cooper, Gen. Nagle
Transcribed And Donated By Linda Schmidt
July 13, 1863
We arrived here Friday evening and the boys spread their blankets on the ground and were soon enjoying as sound a sleep as if in a feather bed.
Saturday morning we took our line of march for Maryland Heights and it was the toughest march we ever experienced. It was very hot and the distance about five miles - three of which was up hill and very steep at that. The boys were loaded down with rations, 100 rounds of cartridges, knapsacks, canteens &c., and were willing to rest when they reached the top.
At night they again spread their blankets on the ground and slept well.
They went to work next morning throwing up entrenchments, and putting things in good condition, as everything was rendered unserviceable in the late evacuation. Nearly $200,000 worth of ammunition having been destroyed and scattered all over the Heights.
Yesterday the boys had a good job in hauling four 30 pounder parrots, and four 24 pounder howitzers, up the Heights. They are just doing "old soldiering" now, but they don't grumble, as it is what they have been sighing for for several months.
Several have been wounded on the Maryland side by the rebel pickets who are just across the Potomac, but not many shots are exchanged, it having been prohibited by mutual agreement.
Col. Porter has been appointed Acting Brig. General and has command of all the forces on the Heights. Surgeon Leet of the 8th Artillery is Brigade Surgeon. Lieut. J.R. Cooper has been appointed Ordnance Officer on General Nagle's staff. Gen. Nagle has command of all the troops in this vicinity.
There is quite a force of rebel cavalry just across on the Va. side.
Our forces are on this sided now, but will not be long,
* * *
~ Republican Advocate, Batavia NY