main action from Manassas, passing along the plateau opposite, an at about two miles distance. I fired upon them as often as large masses could be seen to justify firing at such a distance. Not much effect was produced, so far as I could see. One column of cavalry was, however, scattered in all directions by a solid shot. Very little firing was done by us for the next two hours, at which time we were ordered to Centreville to protect our left flank and our retreat. I chose a position on the crest of a hill, which from its shape gave me command of the ground to our left, and also of the road which our division was retiring. From the position I could perfectly sweep with my fire 180 front right and left down a gentle slope. Four regiments were placed as my supports, and the force at the point could have stopped double its number.
At this time an unauthorized person gave the order to retreat. I refused to obey the order, but all my supporting regiments but one (Colonel Jackson's Eighteenth New York) moved off to the rear. Colonel Jackson most gallantly offered his regiment as a support for the battery, saying "that it should remain by me as long as there was any fighting to be done there." The above-mentioned unauthorized person again made his appearance at this time and again ordered me to retreat, and ordered Colonel Jackson to form in column of division on my right and retreat with me, as all was lost. The order was, of course, disregarded, and in about two minutes the head of a column of the enemy's cavalry came up at a run, opening out of the woods in beautiful order. I was prepared for it, and the column had not gone more than a hundred yards out of the woods before four shells were burst at their head and directly in their midst. They broke in every direction, and no more cavalry came out of the woods. Shortly after my battery was ordered to fall a little farther to the rear, to form in a park of artillery. At that point the battery remained until about 12 o'clock at night, when it was ordered to take up the line of march for Washington, which point it arrived at in perfect order, although much exhausted, men and horses having been hard at work for thirty hours, almost without food and water and without sleep.
My officers, Lieutenant Cushing, Harris, and Butler, were coolly and assiduously attentive to their duties during the day. The accuracy of our fire was mainly owing to their personal supervision of each shot. The men of the company behaved well, and every one seemed to try and do his duty in the best possible manner. My only trouble was to keep the drivers from leaving their horses to assist at the guns.
To Lieutenant Prime, of the Engineers, and Colonel Richardson, of the Third Michigan Regiment, I am indebted for the most valuable assistance in securing the best effect from the firing.
One of the officers and one of the men were struck by spent balls, but I am happy to say we had no loss either in men or horses.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
OLIVER D. GREENE,
First Lieutenant, Second Artillery, Commanding Light Co. G.
F. H. COWDREY, Acting Asst. Adjt. General,
Second Brigadier, Fifth Div., Colonel Davies, Commanding
No. 62. Report of Colonel William R. Montgomery, First New Jersey Infantry.
NEAR FORT ALBANY, VA., July 23, 1861.
SIR: I have the honor to report that, by instructions of Brigadier-