Near Crummettsville, Pennsylvania 1863
As requested by you, I have enclosed a quick map of the local region around the town of Crummettsville, and with information pertaining.
Please understand that this is NOT a topographic map as drawn by our engineers, thus I must inform you that the map as it is, is not to scale.
The land is rich and fertile. It is very nice for farming and grazing for pastureland; Very rich soil. The land is mostly flat and open with a few small clusters of trees, (none of them pines) and with the sole exception of Hopkins Hill being the only major ground feature that rises above the ground level.
Hopkins Hill is a small hill on the Northern side of Riley Creek. It has no trees and is quite plain, but it does offer a nice view of the local area.
South of Riley Creek is Tompkins Woods. This is perhaps the thickest patch of woods within the area. A single dirt road leads northward past the woods and The Riley Farm, and then crosses a bridge over Riley Creek.
The Riley Farm is a small farm with a nice plowed field, and across from it a small orchard of pear trees.
Riley Creek is flat, shallow, but the waters move swiftly within it. It is easily fordable by men on foot as the water only comes up to the thighs of a full grown man, but due to the swiftness of the water and the slickness of the creek bottom, horses, limbers, caissons, and wagons cannot cross except over the bridge and the two discovered fording areas that are shown on the map. Here, men, animals, and wagons, can cross the creek without having to use the bridge, but must do so slowly lest the water causes the animals to panic and all is lost.
Across Riley Creek is The Haney Farm. This is a very nice small family farm, and the family seems to have done quite well judging by the look of their crops and the appearance of the farm. There are a couple of nice apple trees on the farm.
Past The Haney Farm is the Town Church. It has a bell steeple that could be used for observation.
Beyond this is the town of Crummettsville itself.
Crummettsville is a small town that sits at a road junction. Very nicely built cottages, a tavern, a boarding house, a small general store and a storage warehouse that is currently being used by the Union Army occupy it. The road leading East leads towards the major pikes towards York, Harrisburg and Philadelphia, while the road leading West heads out towards Chambersburg, etc…
On the far western edge of town is a large 2-story home of a lady known as “The Widow Spencer”. There are various local stories about how she became a widow. One is that her husband was killed in the war with Mexico, (when he fell off of a wagon), or that he was lost at sea when his ship sank, or was thrown overboard, as the stories seem to differ on this point. Yet there is another story that he was killed in a tragic steamboat accident down near New Orleans and crocodiles savaged his body…
Anyway sir, she is a widow and seems quite well off…
The mayor of the town is Ebenezer Crummett, the grandson of the town founder Jefferson Crummett. He is a shrewd businessman with a weasel-like disposition.
This concludes my report on the local area around Crummettsville.
Your Obdt. Serv.
Captain of Engineers