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

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 46, Part 1 (Appomattox Campaign)
Page 971 Chapter LVIII. THE APPOMATTOX CAMPAIGN.

This was the last stand made by the enemy outside of the line of defenses immediately surrounding Petersburg.

The command moved forward to the bank of Rohoick Creek (about a mile outside of the suburbs of the city),under an enfilading fire from batteries on either hand, and a desultory fire of sharpshooters posted in the inner defenses. A few of the sharpshooters of the Fourth Vermont, who were on the extreme left of the brigade, crossed the creek on a fallen tree, crept up the precipitous bank on the opposite side, and soon silenced the battery on the left.

The men being now worn out by want of sleep, having eaten nothing since the night previous, and completely exhausted by the labors of this long day, were withdrawn to a ravine to the right of the road, and the brigade reformed and moved again to the left of the Nottingham house, where it threw up entrenchments and went into camp for the night.

I then, sir, reported to you for orders at the Turnbull house, occupied during the past winter by General Robert E. Lee as his headquarters, where were established for the night the headquarters of the Vermont brigade.

After you were wounded the command of the brigade, was turned over to Lieutenant-Colonel Tracy, of the Second Vermont, who led the assault on the enemy's works with a gallantry that was worthy of the troops under his command. Too much praise cannot be awarded to this gallant officer for the manner in which he handled the command in that most trying of all moments-the first shock of as desperado battle. Lieutenant Colonel Charles Hunsdon of the Eleventh Vermont, is also deserving of great credit no only for gallantry in the assault but for marked energy in assisting to reform the brigade after it had passed the enemy's works.

When it was reformed here the command was turned over to Bvt.

Colonel Charles Mundee, assistant adjutant-general of the division, who led it in person with most conspicuous gallantry throughout all the subsequent movements. With perfect confidence that the troops under his command would follow wherever he would lead the way, he pressed forward in front of the line of battle with a perfect disregard of all danger, and by his example, as well as by the skill with which he handled the command, contributed in a very great degree to the glorious achievements that day performed by the Vermont brigade.

When the troops were moved into position for the night the command was again turned over to Lieutenant-Colonel Tracy.

Captains Bonett, Sessions, and Baxter, and Lieutenant Lewis of your staff are entitled to the highest consideration at your hangs for the manner in which they performed the arduous duties of staff officers during the day. The horses not coming up, they were obliged to be on foot, but notwithstanding all difficulties they were everywhere present throughout the entire day, cheering on the men, reforming the lines, preserving the connections of the regiments, and helping on by perfect and example the operations of the day.

Sergt. Thomas I. McColley deserves particular mention for the gallantry with which the colors of the Vermont brigade were sustained in front of the foremost line throughout the entire engagement. I trust that his services will meet with suitable recognition

The honor of being the first to break the enemy's line is confidently claimed by this brigade. Being the guiding brigade of the charging column, its position was nearest the enemy's line and most advantageous to reach the works before the troops on the right or left. The


Page 971 Chapter LVIII. THE APPOMATTOX CAMPAIGN.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 46, Part 1 (Appomattox Campaign)
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