eHistory logo Primary Sources Section
Primary Sources Home | Search eHistory

The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

You are currently in Volume XI | Pages range from 1 to 994

Go to Page (current volume):  
Index | Previous | Next
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 11, Part 2 (Peninsular Campaign)
Page 879 Chapter XXIII. SEVEN-DAYS' BATTLES.

proceed up the right-hand road, and afterward I received an order from you, through one of your aides, to march with caution, as the enemy were said to be in force at Turkey Hill. I threw forward an advance guard and flankers on each side of the road in the woods until I arrived at the cross-roads where we observed the enemy's pickets, two of whom we captured in the woods on our right. I then filed to the right, marching through the woods by the right flank until my right reached the field in which General Pender's battery was posted and playing on the enemy. Here I faced to the front and marched forward in line of battle, driving the enemy's skirmishers before us, while I was supported by General Field's brigade, a few paces in rear.

On arriving near the edge of the woods we came under a brisk fire of the enemy, which increased as we emerge from it, and crossed the narrow slip of land to the crest of the hill. This hill was separated by a deep ravine and creek from the enemy's position. Here the brigade encountered a very hot fire, both of musketry and shell, which brought us to a halt from the double-quick in which I had commenced the charge. But it was only after a third charge, in which every effort was made by me to gain the enemy's lines beyond the ravine, that, in consequence of some wavering in the center, I concluded to order my men to lie down in the edge of the wood and hold the position. At the same time, it seeming to be totally impracticable at this point to effect a passage of the ravine, I ordered the Thirty-fifth and Forty-fifth Georgia, who, under their brave leaders [Cols. E. L. Thomas and T. Hardeman, the former on my right flank and the latter on my left], had proceeded a considerable distance in advance of the center, to fall back in line and lie on the ground, which position we maintained until by the general charge the day was won.

On the night of the 29th, Sunday, my brigade, having had a very exhausting march in the position assigned it in your column, bivouacked on the Darbytown road near Atlee's. Many of the men fell down by the way-side, unable to march farther on that day.

The next evening, 30th, when the firing commenced at Frazier's farm, I received an order from you to form close column of regiments on the side of the road, which was executed on the right. Here we were within the range of the enemy's guns, but had not many casualties.

About sunset I received your order to bring forward my brigade and form line of battle on the crest of the ridge, which was quickly done, the road dividing my line into two parts, the Third Louisiana Battalion and Fourteenth Georgia Regiment forming the left, while the Thirty-fifth, Forty-fifth, and Forty-ninth Georgia formed the right wing. I was then ordered to send forward my left wing under the senior officer present, Lieutenant-Colonel Pendleton, of the Third Louisiana Battalion, who led it into the fight. A few minutes later, by your order, I led the remainder of my brigade into the fight, with a warning from you that one of our brigades was in my front. This order was promptly and enthusiastically executed by the whole command, the more so, doubtless, as at this moment the President of the Confederate States galloped by us the whole length of my column and was recognized and vociferously cheered by the men. We had about half a mile to march, and the sound and flash of the musketry indicating the enemy's position to be on the left of the road, I filed to the left and changed my front forward, so as to form line of battle parallel to what appeared to be that of the enemy.

By this time it was dark. I immediately gave the order, "Forward in line of battle." The march was handsomely performed. Orders


Page 879 Chapter XXIII. SEVEN-DAYS' BATTLES.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 11, Part 2 (Peninsular Campaign)
Index | Previous | Next
This symbol external link icon indicates an external link
All images and content are the property of eHistory at The Ohio State University unless otherwise stated.
Copyright © 2014 OSU Department of History. All rights reserved. [citation and copyright information]
eHistory icon