The Buffalo Commercial Advertiser October 1, 1861

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The Buffalo Commercial Advertiser October 1, 1861


Union troop occupying Falls Church and Upton's Hill


Various accounts of Union troop activity following the withdrawal of the Confederates. Worthy of further study since it provide accounts of soldiers destroying private property


The Buffalo Commercial Advertiser


October 1, 1861


Public Domain

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Washington Sept 30.

The reconnoitering rebel force which appeared at Great Falls this afternoon, was scattered by six rounds of shot and shell from a battery planted on the Maryland side by Gen. McCall. It consisted of eight regiments. Commissary General Gibson, who died here to-day. was aged about 85 years, and had long held that position. He entered the army in 1808, as Captain of Infantry from Pennsylvania.

The position of the Federal army is about the same as yesterday, there being no material changes. The day before our forces occupied Kails Church, the rebels evacuated, with six regiments and four pieces of artillery. The federal pickets now occupy one end of the village and the rebels the other. Both positions are on the Leesburg turnpike. The opposing pickets are no more than a quarter of a mile apart

From Falls Church was seen this morning a rebel regiment of infantry drilling on a htl beyond the Loudon and Hampshire Railroad. Artillery was also observed crossing the turnpike to the left of Falls Church. A mile and a half distant fresh rebel earthworks are being thrown up commanding the village.

A large scouting party started out in the direction of Fairfax Court House, the result of which was the capture of three cavalry horses; also privates and a Lieutenant belonging iO one of the North Carolina regiments.

A contraband was brought to headquarters at Upton's Hill yesterday. He was the groom of Gen. Beauregard at the time the latter occupied Falls' Church as his headquarters. The contraband states that he overheard several conversations between Beauregard and his officers, and in one instance the General remarked that he was fearful of attacking the Federal troops opposite Washington. owing to the fact, that by so doing he would unnecessarily sacrifice so many lives,but would fall back, and within six miles of Falls Church would be happy to welcome the United States forces " with bloody hands and hospital graves."

At noon to-day a man was arrested in a piece of woods near Falls Church, on suspicion of being a spy. He could give no satisfactory account of himself.

The wanton destruction of property near Fall's Church still continues. Among the houses burned to-day were the house of Major Nutt, together with the barns and out-houses, the adjoining residence of Dr. Bower, who is now a Surgeon in the rebel army, and the dwelling belonging to Nicholas Febrey's estate, with one exception.

The residence of Murray Mason, on Murray's Hill, was burnt early this morning. The amount of property destroyed yesterday and to-day cannot be less than $50,000. With a view to check these outrages, the commanding officers have issued verbal orders to shoot down any one caught in the incendiary act

Among the killed yesterday morning in the panic, in addition to those heretofore mentioned, were John McGuire and private William B, of Co. I, 1st Pennsylvania drae-oons. The same company also lost three horses.

The conduct of Gen. Baker's regiment and Baker's Fire Zouaves, under trying circumstances, considering that they were undisciplined troops, was an mirable. Col. Baker was absent at the time in Philadelphia, arranging for another regiment to attach to this brigade, and was only apprised of the disaster yesterday after noon.

The rebels have always denied losing men skirmishing at Lewinsville on the 25th, but the tombstone of a new made grave at Fall's Church reads as follows:

"W. L. M. Scraggs, Butler Guards, 2d Regiment South Carolina Volunteers, was killed at Lewinsville, Sept 25th." Others, it is known, were killed, but the body or scraggs is the only one buried at this lace. On Saturday afternoon, when the Federal army advanced into Virginia, the fortifications at Mason s Hill were first occupied by a detachment of Capt, Geary's Kentucky cavalry, under command of Lieut Martin, and followed by Gen. Wadsworth and staff.

A government train left Alexandria with a party of bridge builders, who proceeded as far as Falls Church, on the Loudon and Hampshire Railroad, repairing all the bridges on the way, thus opening communication for supplies for the army in that neighborhood.

The Orange and Alexandria Railroad is open as far as Accotiuk Creek, five miles beyond Springfield station, which latter place is nine miles from Alexandria.

The observatory below has been advanced to Upton's Hill, a mile and a half this side of Falls Church.

From facts ascertained here, it appears that on Wednesday. General Fremont released Colonel Blair from arrest, using language in the order tantamount to a defiance to the Colonel to present his charges formally.

On Thursday Colonel Blair presented charges formally against General Fremont, in response to the defiance. Thereupon, Gen. Fremont immediately arrested Col. Blair, and sent him to Jefferson Barracks. On Friday night the telegraph was allowed to communicate the fact that Blair had been freed from arrest the previous Wednesday, but that the offensive paragraph in the order of release was suppressed, and the fact of Col. Blair's second arrest withheld.

The army regulations allow no officers to be arrested for a longer period than eight days without charges being prefered. Gen. Fremont disregarded the regulations in the case of CoL Blair.

After this violation of the regulations, a second arrest for the same cause and without charges, has attracted attention and caused remarks.

The great fact, in relation to this case today, is the order for the unconditional release of Col Blair.

It is understood that a Court of Inquiry in the case of Doane, of the Pocahontas, acquits him of every charge or disloyalty.

Wilson Barstow, Lieutenant in Volunteers, has been assigned to a position in the staff of Maj. Gen. Dix.



“The Buffalo Commercial Advertiser October 1, 1861,” Mapping the Civil War in Arlington, accessed June 15, 2024,

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