the brigade and marched down and occupied the trenches on the Williamsburg road, where I remained during the rest of the day under artillery fire at intervals, without, however, suffering any casualties.
At dusk the brigadier-general commanding gave me verbal instructions to be ready with three days' cooked rations to move at 1 o'clock that night.
At 9 a.m. on the 27th we were halted near Mechanicsville, on the turnpike, where we remained until 3 p.m., giving the men an opportunity to sleep, recovering the loss of it the night before, and resting after a very rapid march, executed in reaching that place.
About 4 o'clock we moved toward Mechanicsville to the support of the troops who had engaged the enemy. Crossing the Chickahominy about sundown, I formed my command with the brigade in line of battle under a heavy but not very effective artillery fire. I suffered a small loss, but was encouraged by the excellent conduct of officers and men. My heavy loss at Seven Pines left me with but one captain [and] no field officer. Many of the best subalterns had been killed or were absent wounded. I could but feel doubtful and fearful lest demoralization had followed disorganization, but here, when I saw them maneuver like veterans amid whistling balls, and bursting shells, all doubt vanished, and while conscious of its truth, I could but fell a glow of pride in the remark of General Garland on the field of Cold Harbor, when he rode up to the short but firm line and said, "There are not many of you,boys, but you are a noble few."
[DANL. H. CHRISTIE,
Colonel Twenty-third North Carolina Volunteers.]
Captain D. P. HALSEY, Assistant Adjutant-General.
No. 266. Report of Brigadier General Roswell S. Ripley,
C. S. Army of the battles of Mechanicsville, Gaines' Mill, and Malvern Hill.
HDQRS. FIFTH BRIGADE, D. H. HILL'S DIVISION.
Near Richmond, Va., July 11, 1862
MAJOR: I have the honor to report that on the morning of Thursday, June 26, the brigade under my command, consisting of the First and Third Regiments North Carolina troops and Forty-fourth and Forty-eighth Regiments of Georgia Volunteers, marched from its position near the Williamsburg road, about 5 miles from Richmond to a point in the vicinity of the batteries commanding the bridge over the Chickahominy River, on the Mechanicsville turnpike.
With other troops at that point the brigade lay waiting orders until near 4 p.m,. when it was ordered to cross the Chickahominy in advance of the division, and effect a junction with the troops of Major General A. P. Hill's command, then moving down the Chickahominy in the direction of Mechanicsville. The order was executed and the infantry crossed at once, forming line of battle across the road leading to the village, about half a mile in advance of the bridge. Upon communicating with General A. P. Hill, I was informed that the enemy had a strong and well-served battery and force in position near Ellison's Mill, something over a mile to the east of the road, to attack which he had sent Brigadier-General Pender's brigade by the right and other troops to the left, and it was arranged that my brigade was to co-operate. The enemy