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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 1280 N. AND SE.VA.,N.C.,W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.


Numbers 270. Report of Brigadier General William N. Pendleton, C. S. Army, Chief of Artillery.

HDQRS. ARTILLERY CORPS, ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA, April 10, 1865-Day after surrender.

COLONEL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of the artillery under my command from the 1st day of April to the present time. Much to my regret it has to be made without possible access, as it will be seen from the circumstances of the case, to special reports from those superior officers of this important arm- General A. L. Long, chief of artillery, Second Corps; General E. P. Alexander, chief of artillery, First Corps: and General R. L. Walker, chief of artillery, Third Corps:

Owing to demonstrations of the enemy on the right of our lines near Petersburg on the morning of the 1st April, I ordered seven guns of Poague's battalion, which had been held in reserve near Howlett's, to march to Petersburg, and on the night of the 1st, by direction of the commanding general, I ordered the remainder of the battalion down; at the same time ordered the guns which had arrived during the day to proceed on the road toward the right, so as to be out of sight of the tower by dawn. Those guns were used with good effect near Mr. Turnbull's house [General Lee's headquarters] on the morning of the 2nd, where the enemy had unexpectedly massed a heavy force against the opposite portion of our line and succeeded in breaking it, and then sweeping down toward the city, captured a number of men and guns along the line. While these guns were well contesting the ground and holding the enemy in check, Lieutenant-Colonel Poague arrived with the remainder of his guns, and rendered admirable service in retarding the heavy advance of the enemy until such troops as remained could be withdrawn into the interior line. Three pieces with Major Brander were placed on the north side of the Appomattox, so as to annoy the left flank of the enemy and prevent him from crossing. On the line and to the right of the Cox road were placed four pieces of the horse artillery under Lieutenant-Colonel Chew and Major Breathed. The enemy had by this time, 12 o'clock, fully established his line from Fort Gregg to the Appomattox River.

In the fighting attendant upon these operations various batteries of the Third Corps were captured. The conduct of officers and men was worthy of all praise, and that of the drivers and supernumeraries of the artillery, who had been by General Walker armed with muskets, deserves special mention. Those in Fort Gregg fought until literally crushed by numbers, and scarcely a man survived.

In the meantime the firing on Colonel Jones' front, east of the city, had been severe. During the night of the 1st the fire from mortars and guns was incessant, and the men were very much exposed throughout the 2nd. I saw Colonel Jones on the line about 3 o'clock, and found his pieces so disposed as effectually to prevent any attempt of the enemy to improve the advantage already gained at the Rives' Salient.

I was at Battery 45 during the day, and directed its guns against columns of the enemy moving down the valley toward the Weldon railroad. The officers in charge of this part of the line deeming an attack imminent, I ordered two pieces of artillery to strengthen the position.

In obedience to orders from the commanding general, I ordered the withdrawal of all the guns at 8 p.m. This was accomplished with


Page 1280 N. AND SE.VA.,N.C.,W.VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 46, Part 1 (Appomattox Campaign)
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