War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0218 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

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we got into position. We afterward found that they attempted to bring one of the guns on the water side of the battery to bear on our line but failed, probably from want of time. Finally I noticed the fire of the enemy's right slackened, as I supposed from the success and advance of our left. I immediately ordered my own regiment forward, and we had advanced but a short distance when the enemy turned, stopping only to give us one volley of musketry and a round of grape. The enemy retreated very precipitately from Fort Thompson as we entered, and I only succeeded in capturing six of them. I immediately raised the American flag on the parapet, to apprise the gunboats of our position.

By order of General Foster I left one company in the fort, selecting for that purpose Company B,and then marched my regiment forward on the county road to the railroad and up the railroad to the Trent River, where I halted them in a large field on the left. After remaining there a short time General Foster ordered my regiment to cross the river in the gunboat Delaware and other boats that he was using for that purpose, and to take possession of the rebel camp in the Fair Ground outside of New Berne. On reaching camp I found my men much exhausted by their severe labors since they had landed, but was pleased to find that there were comparatively few stragglers.

It pains me to close my report by informing you that my regiment lost 55 men in killed and wounded during the action, a list of whom I herewith transmit.*


Colonel Twenty-fourth Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers.

Captain SOUTHARD HOFFMAN, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Numbers 8. Report of Colonel Edwin Upton, Twenty-fifth Massachusetts Infantry.


New Berne, N. C., March 17, 1862.

SIR: At about 6 a. m., of Friday, the 14th instant, I was ordered by General Foster to move from the bivouac occupied by my regiments during the night previous, and did so, following the Twenty-fourth Massachusetts Regiment. Proceeding along the main road about a mile I was ordered by General Foster to file to the right of the road, take position on the right of the 24th, and advance. The entire regiment had not cleared the road when the enemy opened fire from his artillery. I passed on to the position assigned me and advanced to the front some distance. Being desirous of ascertaining, if possible, the exact position of the enemy, I dispatched scouts to the right and front. They soon returned, reporting the enemy's earthworks in front, with what appeared to be a three-gun battery directly on our right. The enemy discovering our position and opening fire, we were exposed to a fire from the front and right, and at the same time a fire of shell was opened on us from the rear, which I supposed came from our won artillery or gunboats. We were thus in danger of being badly cut up, with no opportunity to retaliate. The fact being reported, I was ordered by General Foster to move to the support of the Twenty-seventh Massachusetts on the opposite side of the road. Moving in that


*Embodied in statement on p. 211.