War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0094 OPERATIONS IN SOUTHEASTERN VIRGINIA. Chapter XIX.

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lowed the Twenty-fifth Massachusetts from the ground upon which we bivouacked the night before up the main road of this island. At 8.15 o'clock we arrived at a crotch of the road, and found General Foster, with the Twenty-fifth Massachusetts, already engaged with the rebels at a breastwork which they had thrown across the road in a well-chosen position. I was ordered and formed my regiment in column by division in rear of the Twenty-fifth Massachusetts. I subsequently received an order to march by a flank across the fire of the enemy and through an almost impenetrable swamp and turn his flank, and after an effort of two and a half hours of the most fatiguing and laborious exertion I succeeded in getting four companies into position to rake the left flank of the enemy's lines behind his work. My men introduced themselves to his notice by opening a brisk fusillade, which he did not condescend to return, but immediately commenced to retreat, when the whole line of our troops made a charge which made him accelerate his place toward his other strongholds, and we took possession of the work.

I cannot speak with too much praise of the conduct of the officers and men of my command for their indomitable perseverance in forcing through the swamp. the undergrowth was a thick bush, entwined by a strong brier, which caused it to close immediately upon the disappearance of a man through it. The water and mud all the way was above the knees of the men, several of whom I saw waist-deep in the mire, and taking into consideration the fact that this was the first time nearly all of them had been under fire, I cannot speak two highly of their conduct, individually and collectively.

After a rest of about half an hour we were ordered to follow the Twenty-fourth Massachusetts, which had just arrived, and pursue the retreating rebels, and after a march of 5 or 6 miles we entered the encampment or winter quarters of the rebels, and found they had surrendered to General Foster, and we were ordered to take up our quarters there with the Twenty-fourth Massachusetts and disarm and guard the prisoners, some 1,900 officers and men, with their arms, equipments, ammunition, and ordnance, quartermaster and commissary stores.

Very respectfully,


Colonel, Commanding Twenty-third Massachusetts.

Captain HOFFMAN,

Assistant Adjutant-General, First Brigade, Coast Division.

Numbers 12. Report of Colonel Thomas G. Stevenson, Twenty-fourth Massachusetts Infantry.

The steamer Admiral, with the Twenty-fourth Regiment on board, having got aground on the afternoon of 7th February, the regiment was not landed until the morning of the 8th. At 7 o'clock in the morning the steamers Union and Eagle came alongside the Admiral and took the troops on board. Two companies - A, Captain Redding, and E, Captain Hooper - were put on board the Eagle, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Osborn, and seven companies on the Union, under command of myself. Company C, Captain Pratt, had been detailed for service on board the gunboat Vedette, where it remained during the action. The Union landed the troops on board at the same place that